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Joseph A. Benson


1949 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
Joseph A. Benson Obituary
Joseph A. Benson

Virginia Beach - Joseph Albert Benson Jr., 65, passed away peacefully in his home surrounded by his wife and daughters on June 21, 2014, after a courageous, two year battle with cancer. He was born in Norfolk, VA, on January 15, 1949 to Joseph and Ellen Benson. He graduated from Maury High School and Old Dominion University, where he was a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity. He went on to get a Masters from the University of Maryland and his PhD from Florida State University. He proudly served his country as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps. Joseph married his college sweetheart, Kathy, in 1971. They lived in Northern VA, OK, CA, Florida, and WY, before moving home to Virginia Beach 30 years ago. He was so blessed to have two amazing daughters, Whitney Settlemier and Meredith Hills. He leaves behind to celebrate his wonderful life his loving wife Kathy, daughter Whitney and husband Jess Settlemier and daughter Meredith and husband David Hills. Joe's greatest pride and joy were his six grandchildren; Bryce, Riley, and Erin Settlemier, and Jackson, Lucas, and Lincoln Hills. He is also survived by his sister Sandy and brother in law Pat Gomez, and nephew Vincent; his sister Debbie Benson; his sister in law Karen and brother in law Jerry Gross, and nephew Brian Watson.

Over the course of his career in education, Joe touched the lives of countless children and teachers. As a professor at the University of Wyoming, he worked with future teachers as they began their own journey into the profession. Joe worked in the Virginia Beach School System for 26 years, until he retired in 2010. He worked in the Office of Accountability, then later moved to Landstown Elementary where he served as an assistant principal for three years. His last six years were spent working as an assistant principal at Alanton Elementary, where he made many lasting friendships with both the faculty and staff. He was a member of St. Aidan's Episcopal Church for 30 years, where he walked both daughters down the aisles on their wedding days and watched his grandsons baptized. Joe was a life-long runner and an avid kayaker on his favorite beach by the bay. He thoroughly enjoyed volunteering at the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Team, especially when working with stranded sea turtles. During his retirement, some of Joe's favorite memories were created as he and Kathy traveled to both Italy and France, places they had both dreamed of visiting.

A memorial service will be held at All Saints Episcopal Church, 1969 Woodside Lane, Virginia Beach, 23454, on Thursday, June 26th, at 10 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Aidan's Episcopal Church or the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Team.

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Published in The Virginian Pilot on June 24, 2014
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