Michael Bernardo, age 66

Michael Bernardo
Michael Bernardo

It is with heavy heart and a deep sense of grief we share the passing of Michael Bernardo, our husband, brother, father, uncle and grandfather who died peacefully at home in Sharpsburg, Ga. on Monday, July 31st, 66 years to the day.

After a long and courageous battle with cancer, Michael was finally called home to be with Jesus. Born in Canton, Ohio he was a family-man at heart, and that family extended to so many others. He had a work-family. He had a friend-family. And he had his family, with his children, grandchild and his beloved wife of 36 years, Wandalee Bernardo. He was loved by so many and will continue to be loved beyond his life here on earth.

Michael was the man in the tower, his 40+ year career in aviation afforded safety to thousands upon thousands of passengers and crew. To those who knew him well, he was the “little guy with a big spirit.” In his path, things moved. Nothing stayed still. Tenacious, focused, persevering and wise, but caring with a heart of gold.

Special thanks to our friends, neighbors, his colleagues at Southwest Airlines and the caring staff at Gentiva Hospice. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, August 26th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Lillian Gardens in Newnan, Ga. In lieu of flowers, the family wishes for everyone to ‘pay it forward’ in a unique way to help someone in need.

The Bernardo family is being assisted by Georgia Cremation.