Bonnie Purvis

Bonnie Purvis pic

October 2, 1950 – October 15, 2017

A native of Traverse City and graduate of the Traverse City Schools, Bonnie Jean Purvis attended Central Michigan University and worked for more than three decades as a lab technician at Traverse City Osteopathic Hospital, later Munson Medical Center, retiring in 2013.  An avid golfer, biker, and kayaker, Purvis was survived by Tammy Krentz, her spouse and loving partner of 36 years.

Reynolds Jonkhoff Funeral Home

Suzie Dowden

April 17, 1934 – January 31, 2010

A native of Parkersburg, West Virginia, Suzanne “Suzie” Dowden majored in physical education at Miami University of Ohio and earned her Master’s from the University of Michigan in 1966.  She taught at Eastern Michigan University and had a varied career of teaching, counseling, and coaching in Detroit, Ferndale, and Kalkaska.  Dowden lived in Traverse City with her partner of 42 years Connie Riopelle.

Traverse City Record-Eagle, February 4, 2010

Esmeralda Bermudez

Esmerdela Bermudez pic

December 19, 1983 – April 28, 2016

Kalamazoo resident Esmeralda Bermudez graduated from Traverse City High School in 2005, earned her associates degree from Northern Michigan College, and worked as a dental technician.  She was survived by two daughters and her wife Jade Austin Morgan.

Dignity Memorial obituary

Alma Routsong

alma-routsong-pic

November 26, 1924 – October 4, 1996

Born in Traverse City, Alma Routsong served in the WAVES during World War II and graduated from Michigan State University.  After moving to New York City, she authored the pioneering novel Patience and Sarah under the pen name Isabel Miller.

Gay Community News, Winter 1996

Lesbian Herstory Archives oral history of Alma Routsong