Remembering Denis and Patty Bishton: Former Running Springs Residents

Mr. Denis Michael BishtonI was so sorry to hear today that both Patty (Patricia) and Denis Bishton have died, and so close together in time, which in some ways, would have been what they wanted. They will continue to be together forever. They didn’t die at the same time but they did pass away only 172 days apart. I knew them well when they lived in Running Springs and when I had my local newspaper in the community they were such great supporters; something I always, always appreciated. They moved from the mountains several years ago and were living in Highland.

Those of us “oldies but goodies” and who lived in Running Springs in the 1980s and 1990s remember them well.

The following information from their obituaries will give all of you who knew them, and those who didn’t, an idea of how special these two people were. I know many “Running Springers” will remember them.

“Patricia (Patty) Louise” was born on Oct. 3, 1944 to Paul and Irene Bellerose. The family moved to southern California and when Patty was 19-years-old she met Denis Michael Bishton and they married and were married for nearly 50 years. . Together they had seven children who, in turn, gave the couple  over 26 grandchildren. Patty passed away on November 13,  only 172 days after Dennis.

My thoughts and loving thoughts go to the Bishton children and grandchildren. Losing both parents or grandparents within such a short time of one another is ironic, and yet, in a way, it is probably as it was supposed to be. These two wonderful, funny, loving couple had been together for decades and now they are still together, just in a different way. They were always together and they always will be.

Some couples are lucky enough to meet, fall in love, get married, deal with all life’s wonderful experiences as well as those that aren’t and still keep that beautiful bond of being together intact.

Denis had a wonderful sense of humor and he could be wonderfully outspoken when he felt strongly about an issue with society or with the community. He loved to talk to people: friends or strangers and it was this engaging personality that brought friends to him. Denis was born in another state but always considered he was a proud southern Californian and throughout his life he lived in areas of, or near, Pasadena and Griffith Park.

Denis was a very proud veteran who served in the Navy where he served two years overseas and three years in the reserves. After his Navy “stint” he met Patricia Bellerose and they married on June 13, 1964. The couple had seven children and at the time of his death the couple had 24 grandchildren they adored and vice-versa. He had worked as a draftsman but he eventually went to work for the state in the sheet metal shop at Patton State Hospital. He retired in 2001.

Dennis died on May 25 at the age of 74. His children and grandchildren adored him and it seems so appropriate that their grandchildren would say that “Grandpa is now an angel in Heaven (in a Hawaiian shirt with a big gold ring on his head), who watches out over us and lives in our hearts.”

Denis was a unique man and if you didn’t want his real opinion on something it was best not to ask. He wasn’t often into being “politically correct” and while he wasn’t rude at all, he would give you his opinion. I loved that about him.

In his obituary his daughter wrote that his loved ones should continue to tell stories about him, continue to share the stories he shared with them and they, in turn, would continue the legacy of the man who made each of their lives better.

When he and Patty lived in Running Springs they made life better too! Weren’t we (the residents) lucky to have them in “our” community for so many years. They were separately, as well as a couple, wonderful people!






One thought on “Remembering Denis and Patty Bishton: Former Running Springs Residents

  1. Julie Wells

    Thank you, Joan, for this tribute to my parents. Dad always considered you friend and that you thought to honor them in an article, even referencing the obituaries that I wrote, made my day a little brighter. You may me smile, you made me laugh, and darn it Joan, you even made me cry. On a sidenote: My parents had 24 grandchildren but there are several that they considered “Theirs” thus the different numbers between the two obituaries. Sincerely, Julie (Bishton) Wells (#6 of 7).

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