Sarah Lynn Bonnell

July 23, 1951March 18, 2021

Sarah Lynn (Hutchens) Bonnell, 69, of Indianapolis, departed this life Thursday, March 18, 2021.

Sarah was born July 23, 1951 in Speedway, Indiana to the late John Wilson and Dorothy Wilmena (Lynn) Hutchens. Sarah was a 1969 graduate of Speedway High School and went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Ball State University, as well as a master’s degree in Education from Indiana University at Kokomo. Sarah was dedicated to serving the students of Eastern Pulaski Elementary School in Winamac, Indiana for 34 years. She was a former member of Winamac United Methodist Church, The Indiana State Teachers Association and The National Education Association.

Sarah was a kind and gentle soul who was happiest making memories with her family and friends. She absolutely loved enriching the lives of her students, her children, and grandchildren through teaching and new experiences. She never passed on an opportunity to read to her grandchildren, and appreciated her own quiet moments with her husband and family, often times celebrating life with a Coca-Cola or nice glass of wine.

Sarah loved high school and college basketball, and disconnected herself every March to closely follow the NCAA Basketball Tournament. She rarely missed an opportunity to cheer on her Indiana Hoosiers, Purdue Boilermakers, and her beloved Winamac Warriors, where she also served as cheerleader sponsor for many years. When there was time to get away, she would make her way with her family to Lake Maxinkuckee where many memories were made.

Sarah is survived by her loving husband of 47 years and 4 months, Tom Bonnell; her devoted sons, Shay (Angie) Bonnell, Dominick (Tiffany) Calabrese, Trent Bonnell and Travis (Jessica) Bonnell; her dear brother, Jim (Cheri) Hutchens; her niece Amy (Hutchens) Terry, and her nephews, Michael and Mark Hutchens; her dedicated grandchildren, Avery, Brady, Bowen and Briggs Calabrese; Audrey, Grant and Aspyn Bonnell; Carter and Connor Bonnell, and Ethan Lamar; a host of dear friends, grateful students, and a forever-grateful community that witnessed the ongoing education of more than 3,000 students during the teaching tenure of Sarah Bonnell. Finally, Sarah is honored and remembered by those students whose theatric talents were developed under her tutelage while participating in the Summer Playhouse children’s theatre program at Winamac Community School Corporation.

Sarah will be honored and remembered as a parent, wife, colleague, friend, and professional educator, with a gathering as a family AND community on Sunday, May 2nd, 2021 at 2PM. Mom's Celebration of Life will be held at: St. Luke's United Methodist Church 100 West 86th St. Indianapolis, IN 46260

We will be hosting a meal for those attending, following the Celebration of Life at one of Sarah’s favorite restaurants: MCL Cafeteria 2370 West 86th St. Indianapolis, IN 46260

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that you send memorial contributions to the Community Foundation of Pulaski County, and designate your donation to the Sherald & Verla Bonnell Family Educational Fund. Donations may be made online, and dedicated to and in the name of Sarah L. Bonnell. The Community Foundation of Pulaski County can be found at the following website:

Online condolences available at: and


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Sarah Lynn Bonnell

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Dave & Tammy Broad

April 5, 2021

What a privilege to be a teacher. Sarah had the highest expectations for her students and family. Because of her unique spirit, all who knew her were given the opportunity to become better people than they might have been otherwise.
Just like Christ, she was not content to leave anyone where she found them, but rather to help them to a higher, better place.
To the Bonnell family, our prayers continue as well as our abiding friendship. I hope you feel our long lasting support. We have all been blessed to know this wonderful woman!

Dave & Tammy Broad

Leslie Martin

March 30, 2021

Shay and family,
My heartfelt condolences to you all. I met her one time picking up furniture from her house. Shay you are all in my prayers.

Leslie Martin and family

Dr. Becky Motley

March 30, 2021

David and I send our heartfelt sympathy to all of you in the loss of your precious loved one. May you be comforted by sweet memories of good times together. She lives on in each of you.

Much Love,
Becky and David
Cheri and Jim’s Cousins

Jalene Foster

March 30, 2021

Mrs Bonnell was my third grade teacher. She was a key contributer in not only my education, but also in my development as a person. She genuinely cared about her students and did everything in her power to help them, even beyond their academic career. This wonderful teacher helped me develop my love of reading and writing. Thanks, in part to her guidance and care, I went on to write and publish my first book. I only wish I had had the chance to tell her how her great teaching and guidance helped bring this dream of mine to fruition.
I know I am not alone in my sentiments. She will be appreciated by thousands of successful adults who were once the children of her classes...

Tasha Campbell

March 30, 2021

She taught when I was in third grade—she was so enthusiastic and made learning fun!!! My daughter, Kaya, had her for 5th grade home room. Kaya absolutely loved her! Her kids in her class were her kids for life! Thank you, Mrs Bonnell, for blessing my family! Will be praying for her family.

Shannon Pitcher

March 30, 2021

You could truly light up a classroom. Kids would look up to you with such joy. I spent a year in your 3rd grade class and for that, I am forever grateful. You were there at a time when I needed the support. Maybe you knew that too. I still hear your voice in my head telling me to “slow down and double check your work.” Thank you for bringing so much into this world. You impacted the lives of so many and will be greatly missed.

Jackie Kiser

March 19, 2021

Tom and boys,
Oh the memories! Every memory I have of time spent with Sarah involves a smile and a laugh. She had many, many gifts that she so willingly shared with others. She also had a huge heart and her caring for her students and friends was unmatched. She will be truly and dearly missed.
Jackie and Greg Kiser

Courtney Poor

March 19, 2021

Our family’s condolences to all of the Bonnell family. You are all in our prayers, and the memories that we share from our interactions are precious to us. We will all meet again in a much better place.
Courtney and Judy Poor

Jill Bonnell

March 19, 2021

We are lifting you all up in our prayers and celebrating our sweet Lucky in our hearts! She was an amazing woman that loved us all well!

Gary Nellans

March 19, 2021

We wish to share our love to your family on the passing of Sarah, a true professional educator.
Gary & Marlene Nellans