Antoinette Ronstadt
1947 - 2014
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Ronstadt, Antoinette 03/14/1947 ~ 09/01/2014 ELM GROVE, WI -- Toni filled her life with teaching children, writing poetry and reading. She earned a Master's Degree in Education from San Diego State and taught special ed students at Grossmont High School for 25 years. She passed peacefully, surrounded by family and pictures of her beloved Fox Terrier, Tommy. Toni is survived by uncle Ted Knap, sister Sue White, brother John (Jan), niece Alison White and nephews Andrew and James Ronstadt. Memorial gathering 11 a.m. Oct. 17, 2014 at Holy Cross Cemetery.

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Published in San Diego Union-Tribune on Oct. 12, 2014.
Memorial Gathering
11:00 AM
Holy Cross Cemetery
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16 entries
January 29, 2021
Hi Toni, We wanted to let you know that your TomTom will soon be joining you. After a year's long fight with Cushings and disc problems, we said good bye today. Toni! Thank You! We loved lil Tommy and he brought joy to our home. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of his life...BTW, we still miss you. Take good care my friend. Love always. Linda & Bud
Linda Johnson
October 6, 2017
When you check in .... your Tom-Tom is doing very well! He was groomed this week and is one beautiful 'pup.' He still prefers humans to other dogs and his antics always lead us to smiles. Thank you for entrusting us with his care. Thinking of you often and do miss you. Especially, when Tom & I pass by your home in Fairview. Bud & Linda. (A.K.A.....Bacon and Lettuce). :)
Linda Johnson
March 28, 2017
We miss you always and wanted to be sure you knew that your TomTom is thriving! I wish we could have celebrated our 70th together. With warm memories and our love, Bud & Linda
Linda Johnson
March 14, 2017
Happy 70th birthday, Toni. I miss you every day and often have things I wish I could tell you, things I know you'd like. Until we meet again, my beloved sister. Le sauce est tu!
Sue White
September 4, 2016
Remembering you fondly Dearest "Tonster"
Lovingly, and always, Gina
Gina Santacroce
September 3, 2016
My Dear Toni,

Two years have now passed and Tommy continues to thrive. He is definitely in charge of the house and has wiggled his way into the hearts of many of the neighbors, as well. Knowing you are at peace. We continue to miss you and the emptiness remains. Always with our love, Linda & Bud
September 8, 2015
I miss you Toni. I think about you often. xo
July 30, 2015
Tommy and Gus watching "Dr. Pol"
Toni, It has been a year since you sent us your Tommy. We can report that he is doing great, and is fast friends with Gus, our Spinone as you can see from the photo. The photo was taken while they were watching "The Incredible Dr. Pol".
Linda and I both miss you dearly.
November 11, 2014
I received a call from today from John, her brother. I had been praying he would call me so I could connect with him regarding Toni's passing. I am grieving because I really loved Toni.

We were good friends and neighbors in Fairview, Oregon. I often helped her care for her beloved father Hank, and her beloved dog Tommy.

Toni was so kind to me and generous. I have her quilt she made me, some dishes she gave to me and a pretty pillow. She was sometimes hard on me because I worked so hard. She scolded me, taught me, and debated with me. Ha. She was quite the debater.

I only knew of Toni's passing on facebook, when her niece wrote, "rest in peace dear Aunt". Toni and I were planning on meeting in September in Oregon. The last time I wrote to her and heard from her was in July. Then I wrote in August, and I tried to call and call and call. Toni told me she was having a little surgery and must garner all of her strength in July. I knew something was wrong, and she didn't feel well enough to share.

I miss you Tonster. (That is what I called her). Sometimes she called me "old girl", sometimes she called me "little turkey". Sometimes she just called me by my name. Either way, the time I spent with her with dinners and talking about Emily Dickerson, and her passions of fine literature, and poetry/writing were wonderful. I will never forget you Tonster. Love you always and forever.

My heartfelt condolences to her family. I am so very sorry. May God hold you in HIS graces.

Gina Santacroce
October 24, 2014
Toni and Tommy Saying Goodbye
The emotions have been at their peak with the loss of our dear friend, Toni. We met in Fairview Village, OR and immediately made a connection. You see, we came from the same area of Wisconsin that Toni had many fond memories of as a child. We shared many of those memories. As time passed, we thought at some point--in the future--we would all be living in Wisconsin and providing assistance to one another.
We even joked about helping each other with the walkers, times and we all believed they would come to pass. Unfortunately, Not so!
When we learned of Toni' illness, there simply are no words to describe our feelings. Those goofy times in our old age were simply not meant to be.
However, Toni left us with her most precious and beloved--Tommy!
She asked if we would care for him and without hesitation the answer was a definite, YES!
Toni made arrangements to fly Tommy to our home in Oregon.
There is a photo attached taken by the transport staff, of Toni and Tommy's 'good bye'. There remain those empty times when simply her presence would have provided calm; however, we would like to share with you some of Toni's final thoughts.
First, she told me that we would never be without her presence. Tommy would be with us and through Tommy the connection would remain. Further, her pain was increasing and her Father provided peace. He came to her during one of the painful episodes. He explained that all would be ok. The pain would soon end and they would be together again.
How right he was. Now the time for those of us remaining is simply to try and understand why such a fine, intelligent woman had to be taken from us all too soon.
Toni was a vibrant woman and her 'bucket list' was full. At the top of the list, move to Wisconsin. It was in Wisconsin where she immersed herself into her poetry and it was there she found 'home.' Ultimately the English Cottage she purchased could not have been a more perfect match. The time we spent together, although all too short, was filled with solitude and beauty. We will miss those times.
We miss you, Dear Toni, and the tears have yet to end. Once in our conversation, I explained that with our relationship I had been blessed with a Sister. One that would care and hold my hand through troubled times.
We won't be able to share our old age ...she simply left too soon. However, we hold and care for Tommy with the love and devotion we promised.
Harold and Linda
October 16, 2014
How very sorry I am to hear of Toni's passing. The Ronstadt family was an important part of Barclay Ave in San Diego for many years. It was a neighborhood with many children, cars and playing in the street in the summer. My condolences to Sue, John and their families
Janice Taylor
October 13, 2014
To the Family of Toni
Heartfelt condolances in the loss of Toni, from her classmates of OLSH and Rosary High School circa the mid 1960s. I was so sad to learn she had passed away so young, yet happy to know she had left in peace. Thank you for mentioning her accomplishments as I did not know what she had gone on to do in life. Bless all of you, her family, at this time of sorrow.
Elizabeth Labadie and Family
Elizabeth Labadie
October 13, 2014
Toni and I do the Cape
My wonderful friendship with Toni spanned 35 years and 3 locations. We got together weekly during our busy working lives in San Diego and I visited her in Portland several times and Milwaukee once. We've taken vacations together (to San Francisco & to the East coast).

Toni was generous, talented, accomplished, dedicated to her students, family, friends, intelligent, committed to learning, inquisitive, quirky-funny, ever changing, but ever fixed (?? If you know Toni, that may make sense. :)

I cannot count the number of gourmet meals I ate at Toni's well-appointed home (she loved Martha Stewart recipes; her cookware was of the highest quality; her table was artistically set). We spent many an evening with a bottle of wine, a 3-course meal, reading poetry, discussing a myriad of non-related subjects, solving the world's problems and our own, and adjourning to the TV room for a night of BBC comedies, an indy film or a PBS series.

In 1997 Toni and I took a 3-week trip to the East coast. We hiked the Freedom Trail, trekked Walden Pond at sunset, meandered through Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, toured the Emerson House, Branson Alcott's Transcendental Society, perused the collections at the Widener Library and the Sylvia Plath memorabilia at Smith College, explored the grounds of Emily Dickinson's home in Amherst, attended services at Old North Church, did the Salem Witch thing, marveled at the House of Seven Gables and the Custom House, dined at the Hawthorne Hotel, ate steamer clams in Marblehead, and drank beer at Cheers and Sam Adams Brewery (and a few other enticing little pubs). We toured the Cape, stopping at seafood joints with live bands and often kicked up our heels on the dance floor. Spending time with Toni meant combining the scholarly and intellectual with the bawdy and/or giddy.

We laughed ourselves silly over the antics of Rowen Atkinson, Benny Hill, "One Foot in the Grave," our fellow man, ourselves, and the general absurdities of life. We could always make each other laugh.

Toni was an avid reader (of quality literature only!) and she introduced me to some of my favorite authors (A.S. Byatt, Anita Brookner, Iris Murdock, Donna Tartt). Before book clubs became ubiquitous (a word I first heard from Toni), we started a book club, and it is still going strong today.

Toni and I saw each other through personal crises, professional glitches, disappointments, divorces, illnesses and deaths. (This time I'll have to go it alone)

One of Toni's greatest gifts was her magic with words and poetry was her medium. She was a superb poet, and her lines rang with music and trueness. She loved the discipline of higher education, and seriously contemplated getting her doctorate after retirement. Instead she took numerous classes and workshops in poetry and her professors readily acknowledged her talents. She was my audience when I memorized "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" section by section.

Toni has left a stamp on my life. The tiny quilted pillow she autographed, the quilted wall hanging she made for my mother's last apartment, the antique ring she found at an estate sale, the Lisa Ceccorilli earrings and pendant, the 50-page scrapbook of our
trip back East, her picture in a collage of photos on my bureau, a rose top she knitted. Our lives have intertwined with mementos and most importantly with memories.

Toni also demonstrated her creativity in the crafts of knitting and quilting. As with everything else she pursued, she scoured the finer craft shops for quality yarns and fabrics. She would then create a piece of beauty and promptly give it away to those she loved.

I feel very fortunate that I was one of those she loved.
Suzanne Geba (Hawes)
October 13, 2014
If you knew Toni, you probably remember her most for her generosity. She gave not only physical gifts, but also the gift of her time. Always willing to listen to a friend's needs, Toni demonstrated unconditional love. Over the years, we shared many adventures and loads of laughter. I was most fortunate to call her sister and friend!
Sue White
October 13, 2014
I worked with Toni the last year she taught, she was an amazing Teacher, funny sense of humor.
Carolyn Martin
October 13, 2014
She was a kind and loving person.

Jeri Lundy
Home Ec
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