After graduating from Cocoa schools, Anne attended the University of Florida where she was a majorette with the Fightin' Gator Band and a member of Alpha Chi Omega sorority. Making her debut in Orlando, she was part of the social scene until she married her husband, Otis Bonner, and became an Air Force wife. He was from Athens, Georgia and attending the University of Georgia when they met on Cocoa Beach in the early 1950’s. Her parents allowed her to date Otis because they were friends with his relatives who lived in Cocoa Beach and Merritt Island.
Otis became an Air Force fighter pilot and retired as a Colonel after twenty-six years of service. Having lived all over the world, Anne considers the Philippine Islands and Hawaii her favorite places. She learned Asian cooking, oil painting, cake decorating, snow skiing, and played lots of bridge, when she was not involved with her children: Bradford, Stacy and Trey (Otis III) and their activities. Anne’s writing talent enabled her to become Editor of the Officers' Wives' Club magazine at Perrin Air Force Base, Sherman-Denison, Texas.
Anne enjoyed life as an Air Force wife. At the risk of sounding Pollyannish, she actually liked every assignment (some better than others). She considered entertaining duties and being involved in Officers' Wives' Club activities fun.
No matter where Anne traveled, she was always reading and writing, and poetry was her first love. She is a member of the Florida State Poets Association, Inc., National Federation of State Poetry Societies, National League of the American Pen Women, Cape Canaveral Chapter, and was a board member of the Space Coast Writers' Guild. She has written and published five historical fiction books for young adults which are set in the wilds of early Florida. Her Pine Haven trilogy so fascinated her readers, she added two more books to the series. Her latest books are historical love stories for older readers, set in Florida, of course.
Anne Bonner is the author of ten books and a poetry anthology. She is a fifth generation Floridian. Her father, Judge William G. Akridge and her grandfather, Noah B. Butt, were partners in the law firm, BUTT & AKRIDGE in Cocoa, Florida. Their offices were in the historic Bellair Arcade building next to the State Theatre in Cocoa Village.
Judge Akridge was Mayor of Cocoa; State Representative, following in his stepfather’s, Noah Butt’s footsteps; and a Circuit Court Judge for twenty years. Noah and William were instrumental in the development of Port Canaveral, with William serving as the first Vice Chairman of the Canaveral Port Authority, as well as its attorney. On Anne’s maternal side, her grandfather, James W. Strange, D.D.S. was the first dentist in Melbourne.
Anne and her grandson Shaun Bonner appeared in a WMFE-TV documentary, “Harboring A Dream,” about the Canaveral lighthouse (left) and port. St. Gabriel’s Episcopal Church in Titusville which houses stained glass windows honoring the first lighthouse keeper was the backdrop for Anne’s interview.
Right, Anne poses as Mary Burnham, wife of the first permanent Cape Canaveral Lighthouse keeper.