Perina Bonato was born August 10, 1921, in Telluride, to Sebastian and Mary Anna Bonato (nee Tosca), immigrants from Bassano del Grappa, Italy. The older sister to twin siblings, Joanna and James, Perina lived at the Smuggler Mine, in old Ophir and in Telluride. She attended grade school in Ophir and graduated from Telluride High School, making lifelong friends along the way.
After the Second World War, Perina married a fellow Tellurider, and son of Finish immigrants, Elmer Ranta. Together they started a family that grew to include daughter, Vicki, born in 1949, and son, Allan, born in 1952. Perina worked hard raising her family, enjoying and passing along her love of the outdoors to her children. Family outings into the areas surrounding Telluride included jeep trips into the mountains, mushroom hunting on Sheep Mountain and overnights at the family’s Trout Lake cabin.
Outside the home, Perina worked as the deputy town treasurer and then as the deputy county treasurer, eventually retiring after more than 20 years of service to the community. In 1987, Perina and Elmer relocated to Montrose, where he worked on his golf game and she was a volunteer at the Montrose Memorial Hospital, a post she dedicated herself to for 20 years.
Perina, or Noni, will be missed by her family – daughter Vicki (and husband Ivar Eidsmo and granddaughters Tori and Lisa); son Allan (and wife Becky Ranta and granddaughters Kailey and Traci); and sister, Jo Lehrer.
A memorial service will be held this summer.