It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Norman Leslie Bird, 86, a beloved Husband, Father, Brother, Papa, GGPa and Friend. He went home to be with the Lord on November 14, 2023, surrounded by his loving family.
Norman was born on April 14, 1937, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada to his parents Joseph and Marion Bird. Growing up in Vancouver until the age of 12, where he became the Golden Gloves Champion for boxing. Norman and his family then moved to Eureka, California where in 1954 he gained his United States Citizenship. Norman joined the United States Navy where he became a Seaman Recruit for one month and two days before he received an Honorable Discharge. Norman met his beloved wife Janet when he moved to Eureka. The minute he laid eyes on her, he told her he was going to marry her. Janet did not quite agree then. However, following high school graduation, Norman and Janet married on July 12, 1956 in Eureka, California.
In 1957 Norman and Janet had their first daughter Lesley, followed by their second daughter Deborah in 1959. Along came their third daughter Linda in 1961 and their last daughter Lisa was born in 1963. Norman provided for his family by driving for UPS early in life, he then moved on to owning and operating a scrap metal recycling company, Norbird Recycling. Norman loved spending his days driving around Northern California.
Norman always enjoyed a good poker game; he was nicknamed Stormin Norman on the circuit. He played in many tournaments up and down California and Nevada. Norman also owned and ran several race horses, which took more than a few Championships in their prime. Norman’s pride and joy was his family and he would do anything for them. Norman was always the first one on the dance floor and the very last to leave; he took great joy spinning his wife around.
Norman is survived by his four daughters and their spouses, Lesley and Bill Barnett, Deborah Wheeler, Linda and Steve Baptista, Lisa and David Kahre. He has nine surviving grandchildren, Julie, Michael, Kelli, Steven, Nicole, Mandy, Christy, Justin and Paige. He also has 12 surviving great grandchildren Ryan, Riley, Sloane, Zoe, Clark, Camden, Cody, Giovanni, Brenden, Atlas, Barrett and Owen. Each and every one provided the stars in his eyes.
Norman is preceded in death by his beautiful and beloved wife Janet of 67 years of marriage. His brother Sonny, his sister Joycie, grandson Brian, his father Joseph and his mother Marion.
Norman’s Graveside Service will be held at Memory Gardens on December 1 at 2 p.m., located at 3873 East Avenue, Livermore, CA 94550.
A Celebration of Life in Memory of Norman to follow at Cattleman’s Restaurant from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. located at 2882 Kitty Hawk Road, Livermore, CA 94550.
In Lieu of flowers, a Memorial Contribution may be made to The American Lung Society, in his honor.
The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader
The Riverbank (Calif.) News
Nov. 22, 2023