Photo: Margot Duane
Frank Bonita passed away on Saturday, August 2, 2008 in Oakland, California.
He is survived by his wife Marilyn and his daughter Marisa.
Frank was a dear friend of Franziska and mine. We were married at Frank and
Marilyn's home in Concord, CA in the summer of 2006. They opened their
hearts to us as easily as they opened their home for that precious day.
Frank retired from his job a bit over a year ago and was literally having the
time of his life visiting with friends, camping, and developing his Sprinter
van to be the ultimate camping vehicle.
I had the pleasure many times to brainstorm ideas with him on topics as
diverse as geodesic domes, water storage and lighting design. We shared
many common interests and I frequently learned from his vast experiences.
To say he was "handy" would be a serious understatement. He was skilled
with many tools and materials and wholly unafraid to try something new and
creative. I admired his many creations, and he was always happy to help me
with my many projects.
"Frank lived balls-to-the-wall!" said my good friend Michael Marx, and I
know it is true. Frank loved good food, good friends and good times. He
was always willing to bring them all together whenever possible.
Frank was not shy about his feelings or his thoughts. He
was as candid as he was joyful. You knew where you stood with Frank. I loved
him, and I will miss him dearly for the rest of my life.
Frank fell in love with Burning Man and the people who attend it. He was
a beloved member of Camp Sunscreen for many years. He was a great
contributor to many art projects, and was often found lending a hand at
at one of Benny's Coolneon
One of Frank's favorite Burning Man stories is the time when a steel bracket
broke while he was at Burning Man. He thought to himself that what he really
needed was someone with a welding rig. He took one step into the road and
at that same moment someone came wandering up the road saying "Welding! Anyone
need Welding?" Instant serendipity. Knowing Frank was instant serendipity.
One of my favorite stories involving Frank was the time that he helped me
with the Desert Nose project. I had written a program to help define the
lengths of the struts, but after cutting 1500 feet of steel pipe, the nose
project wasn't coming together. He sat down with me and I attempted to explain
how my program worked. In the process of describing it the problem became
apparent and after a simple fix, we recut about 9 struts, and the nose could
then be completed. Frank and Marilyn spend many hours over a period of weeks
helping me build the desert nose in my backyard. It was wonderful to have
them both. Frank went on to design several lighting drivers for the
desert nose project.
Franziska and I loved Frank and will always remember his warmth and generosity.
I believe we will all be lucky to die so well loved.
h o c o (at) t i m e f o l d (dot) c o m
Photo by Tom Davis