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James Benson

Obituary
4 entries
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james c. benson TUCSON, Ariz. - James C. Benson passed away peacefully Thursday, July 26, 2012, in Tucson, after a long illness. Born May 15, 1932, in Rockford, Ill., the son of Harold and Mae Benson. Jim attended Rockford East High School, graduated Beloit College, and went on to obtain a masters degree in geology from University of Wisconsin, Madison. He worked first as an oil geologist in Midland, Texas for Zapata Oil, founded by former U.S. President, George H.W. Bush. He then returned to Rockford, where he became a geology instructor at Rockford College. There, Jim met and married Judith Agema, daughter of Samuel and Ruth Agema, on Aug. 23, 1963. They spent the next three years on a leisurely "Valley of the Sun Honeymoon" in Scottsdale before again returning to Rockford to start a family. Jim next undertook a technical writing position at Sundstrand Corp., moving on to Howard Monk & Associates, before helping found well-known ad agencies Benson/Rathke and, later, J.C. Benson & Associates. He was extremely creative, an excellent writer and a confident public speaker. Jim was also well known for his first-rate golf game, having played in many tournaments and on courses throughout the United States and beyond. A lifelong learner, he enjoyed tennis, hiking, music, traveling, antique cars, museums, world cuisine (especially Mexican!), and was passionate about science, nature and landscaping. Upon retiring, Jim moved to Tucson, where he met and married Carole Hyder on Feb. 23, 1997. Jim and Carole enjoyed traveling and spending time with friends and family. They built their own home in San Lorenzo, N.M., where they enjoyed several years soaking in the beauty of rural Southwestern terrain and culture. They spent the last five years together back in Tucson, where Carole took care of Jim as he was declining in health. She was always by his side, providing care, support, and enduring love. Survived by wife, Carole Benson of Tucson; daughter, Kristy Yoder Guerra (Richard Guerra) of Dayton, Texas; son, Jonathan Benson (Danette Buskovick) and grandson, Owen Benson of Minneapolis; daughter, Jennifer Benson-Shelton (Brent Shelton) of Rockford; son-in-law, Mark (Debbie) Hyder and granddaughters, Courtney (Ryan) Thomas and Crystal Hyder of Tucson; and lifelong dear and best friend, Howard Weyburg of Rockford. A very special thank you to the residents of Far Horizons East and the owners and staff at Dempsey's Place in Tucson, who provided aid and friendship to both Carole and Jim during his illness. Predeceased by parents, Harold and Mae Benson; sister, Louise Elaine Benson; and wife, Judith Benson Anderson (Peter Anderson). A memorial service will take place in Tucson at a later date. Condolences and service inquiries may be sent to Carole Benson, 7570 E. Speedway Blvd., No. 331, Tucson, AZ 85710, Jonathan Benson at jon-james@comcast.net or Jennifer Benson Shelton at Ppd71@comcast.net.
Published in Rockford Register Star from Aug. 3 to Aug. 6, 2012
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