Dean Elison Bridger, Sr., 66, passed away on August 13, 2022 at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born to Barbara Newton Bridger and Harold Alton Bridger on August 07, 1956 in Norfolk, VA.
Dean’s example and positive spirit will live on through his caring family: devoted wife of 28 years and eternal friend, Georgette Warner Bridger; children, Dean E. Bridger Jr (girlfriend, Mary Beth), Jennifer Kasey Bridger, Aaron S. Raike (girlfriend, Emily), and Andrew T. Raike; grandchildren June Nicole, Keirsten, Owen, Xavier, and great grandchild, NovaLiegh. He is also survived by his brother Dennis (wife, Jenny), sister Diane (husband, Jess), sister-in-law JoAnn, brother-in-law David (wife, Paula) and brother-in-law and best buddy Kevin; as well as his nieces and nephews, many cousins, and numerous friends. He is now reunited with his grandson Joseph who passed away much too soon.
Dean had an incredible zest for life and loved his wife, family and friends with an uncompromising passion and dedication that will remain with us forever. Whether he was on the golf course, at a NASCAR race, or playing dominoes, Dean was the life of the party. He brought that same passion to his work, proud to build the F-150 at the Norfolk Ford plant until its closure, and a long career as an electrician for a great boss and wonderful friend, Randy Branham, installing sports stadium lighting up and down the east coast.
A quote by Robert Browning, “Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made” was the foundation on which Dean lived his life. Sadly, Dean was diagnosed with a rare and chronic illness that ultimately kept him from making that a reality. Dean fought a long and courageous battle against Scleroderma and Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension. Through this journey he remained positive, and became a friend to many at John’s Hopkins University Hospital where specialists worked tirelessly for eight years to manage his disease progression and give him the best quality of life possible.
Rather than undergo invasive procedures and remain in the hospital, Dean opted to spend the remainder of his time at home, comfortable in his own surroundings, and immersed in the love and affection of his family and sweet and loyal canine companion, Mia. He passed away wrapped in the strong arms of his sons and is now at peace.
A Celebration of Dean’s life will be held on Saturday, September 17, 2022; 2 p.m. at the Bridger’s Residence in Suffolk, VA. Dean extended kindness to all he met, if you would like to offer kindness in his memory, donations can be made in Dean’s name to the Scleroderma Research Foundation (srfcure.org) or the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (phassociation.org).
Let your tears subside knowing he is at peace and may you experience the incredible joy that Dean felt for life.