IN THE END: Weldon Bona ended his life on Friday, January 19, 2018 with help from Medical Assistance In Dying and Dying with Dignity Canada. Peaceful, pain-free, and with a smile on his face, Weldon chose to die as he lived–fully and on his terms.

IN THE BEGINNING: Weldon was born in Baddeck on Cape Breton Island to parents Maisie and Wilfred. He was big brother to Michael and spent his early years in North River Bridge until the tragic loss of his father in a devastating fire after which Maisie and the boys moved to South Bar and then Whitney Pier.

Weldon was keenly curious, observant, and imaginative, exploring and learning everything he could about the things he was interested in. After graduating from Sydney Academy, Weldon worked until he earned enough to set off for Toronto where a job at a print company “got the ink in my blood”.

He returned to the east coast and attended College of Cape Breton and Dalhousie University. He moved back and forth between Halifax and Toronto and hitched around North America a few times. He worked with punk rock bands designing logos and posters. These years would establish Weldon’s love of and dedication to art, culture, and design.

When, in 1981, he returned to Cape Breton to live and work, Weldon opened a graphic design business bringing an avant-garde approach and artistic sensibility that would eventually make him one of the top designers in Nova Scotia. From the early days when he was the first in Cape Breton to acquire a Mac, Weldon was always on the cutting edge of technology.

IN RECENT YEARS: Weldon has been the Director of Communications for over a decade at Unama’ki Institute of Natural Resources, a Mi’kmaw environmental and natural resource management organization. He once wrote, My work at UINR brings together everything I am interested in—the natural world and our responsibility to it, something that my Mi’kmaw friends and co-workers understand so well.”

IN HEART AND IN MIND and throughout Weldon’s time, he taught himself and learned from others. He grew gardens and food. He made friends, and lovers, and art. He worked with many artists and was instrumental in local art and cultural organizations.

He played an important role, not only because he was an artist himself and immersed in the arts, but he had a talent for seeing the bigger picture and speaking his mind unabashedly. “For argument’s sake” was a principle Weldon lived by, but it was important to him to get people to see things in a new way. This made Weldon a sincere advocate for artists of all disciplines and a worthy mentor. To paraphrase a friend, “Those fortunate to be his friend will carry with them the simple lessons learned—to laugh often, to question everything, and to see beauty everywhere.”

And Weldon did—authentically and always. Weldon lived his truth and stuck to it. That thread of truth would run through everything he did and created.

ALWAYS REMEMBERED by beloved brother, Michael (Marilee); nephew, Eric (Kathleen); many loved and loving family and friends, and Spice (aka Space), his dog.

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So sorry xxoo