Dianne Mary Bernard was born July 12, 1948, in Chicopee, Massachusetts and passed on to her next adventure on November 17, 2021. She was the first child of the late Armand Bernard and Alice (Kupiec) Bernard. Armand was a restaurateur and Alice supported the family taking care of the children and home. Although her dad was French Canadian, Dianne grew up in a tight knit Catholic Polish community surrounded by extended family and friends. Nearly all of them lived within a two-block radius of each other and most of them still do. After high school, Dianne headed to California to visit her cousin living in San Diego, and to experience the sixties scene and see the Pacific Ocean. Through mutual friends, she met her ex-husband, Mike Brady. Dianne and Mike had four children together.
Dianne enjoyed traveling with Mike. Together, they would go to Paris and Denmark, tour the United States, and spend time in Mexico. She had fond memories of apple picking in Washington State. Eventually, the family settled in Berkeley. Dianne was an avid yard-saler and treasure hunter. She sold those treasures in the second-hand shop that she and Mike opened. She was proud that her shop was mentioned in the late Herb Caen’s column in the San Francisco Chronicle.
In 1984, looking for a new beginning, Dianne visited a friend in Arcata and fell in love with the north coast. A dear friend found Dianne a home in Arcata and with the help of her brother-in law, she got a car big enough to move herself and her four children from Berkeley. Dianne lived in this home until her passing. She created a beautiful garden and made the place her own. There were challenges and difficult moments, but Dianne would say that you will always get what you need.
Over the years, Dianne continued her adventures by traveling to other states, going to the gem show in Tucson or attending music festivals. She loved the vision quest she took where she fasted and meditated alone in the wilderness for three days. A personal achievement was her graduation from Humboldt State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies. After graduation, she worked at Our House with the Youth Services Bureau, Redwood Community Action Agency. She made a lot of friends and worked with troubled teens. A highlight was a work trip to Washington, D.C. After 15 years with the program, Dianne felt that it was time to follow another of her dreams. She studied Ayurveda medicine at the California College of Ayurveda in Grass Valley and received a Practitioner certification. Her professional career path segued into the food service industry in Arcata where she worked at the Pacific Rim Noodle House and then the North Coast Co Op. After some years in the Deli, she retired.
In her retirement, Dianne spent time with her family, friends, and her dogs. She loved to work in her garden and was an exceptional gardener. She would read several books at the same time about all kinds of different subjects. She enjoyed walking at the Arcata Marsh and the Community Forest. When the day was gray, Dianne would remark that the flowers and colors were more vibrant.
Dianne was preceded in death by her father and mother, Armand and Alice Bernard, her brother, Timothy A. “Putt” Bernard, her ex-husband, Michael Brady and her family dogs, Lulu, Freida, Athena and Tank. Dianne is survived by her loving sister, Judith Gilliam of Chicopee; several cousins, nieces, and nephews all of Chicopee. She leaves behind her devoted daughters Faith Brady, Tasha Brady (Brandon, Sebastian, and Mason), Billie Brady (Emiliano and Amaya), her son Michael Brady (Mike Jr.) and her beloved canine companion, Yoda.
Dianne loved to laugh. She was kind, generous, thoughtful, spiritual, and fun to be around. Her passing has left an emptiness, but Dianne’s legacy is to embrace life and practice kindness. A Celebration of Life will be held in early 2022. Future announcements will be posted to Dianne’s Facebook page.
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