Fun in her bones: Local woman takes skeletons out for photos

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

Sharon Thornton loves Halloween, and she’s found a way to extend the season and get some laughs while doing it.

Hank and Bonenita are the two fake skeletons she bought about four years ago at Walmart, her longtime employer.

She takes them to places around Springfield, or poses them at home, and takes photos of them.

That’s how the Springfield News-Sun caught up with her. She was getting photos with Hank last week in Veterans Park, including him on the well-known pumpkin carriage, plus with the princess figures and climbing the rocks near the stage.

“I just had a blast with him,” Thornton said. “Hank can be a real handful.”

In one photo, she has the hood of her car open, Hank has jumper cables and Bonenita is on the ground with the other end of the cables.

Hank also has been photographed mowing the grass and sitting on the porch with Bonenita. Last year, Thornton took the two skeletons to the reservoir and buried Hank in the sand on the beach with just part of his bones exposed.

They also have been dressed as Santa Claus and an elf. The two skeletons have even been Romeo and Juliet.

“I love posing them in different pictures,” Thornton said.

She has taken skeletons to the Clark County Public Library, and when she took Hank to Mother Stewart’s for a drink, he sat at the bar while she enjoyed a soda.

“If it brings a smile to someone’s face, it makes my day,” she said. “I try to keep a positive state of mind.”

She also takes them to her work at the Walmart on the city’s east side, and she said coworkers love them.

“I thought it would be fun at work,” said Thornton, who has been at Walmart 18 years.

There, she has taken pictures of them answering phones or helping her push the freight out.

People look forward to it, she said, and ask: “When is Hank coming in?”

Bonenita, who has her own wig, will dress like a pirate this year, Thornton said.

Hank even helped decorate the Christmas tree last year.

“Halloween is my favorite time of the year,” she said. “I am always up to something.”

Thornton, who turns 65 this week, said she does it because it makes her happy, and she notes other people take pictures with Hank and Bonenita when they are out.

“It gives me something fun to do,” she said. “My grandkids love it.”

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