Carlene Elizabeth Benham
1914 ~ 2014
Carlene Elizabeth Benham, 99, of Meridian, ID. died January 24, 2014, after a short battle with pneumonia. Carlene was born on August 13, 1914, to Carl J. and Bessie Julia Boyd. She was one of five children and is survived by her sister Betty Jordon of Boise, Idaho. After graduating from Tuscon High School, she spent several years as a dental assistant.
She met her husband, Howard Benham, in 1934 while he was stomping grapes at his cousin's home. She immediately left but came back later and soon learned that they shared the same birthday (August 13th), albeit seven years apart. For their first date they went to Mount Lemon to cut their first Christmas tree. After an eighteen month courtship, the two married on June 12, 1936, and Carlene quit her job to join Howard as he crisscrossed the West working for the Soil Conservation Service collecting grass seed to replant the devastated areas in the Dust Bowl. After four years on the road together they had their first son, Howard C. Benham of Brackettville, TX., followed by daughters Susan G. Williamson of Meridian, ID. and Lynda D. Hall of Cloudcroft, NM., and a son, Clark J. Benham of Carefree, AZ. At the time of her death she had fourteen grandchildren, twenty eight great grandchildren, and 3 great great grandchildren. After her children left home she, along with Howard, took a position at Landsun, a Methodist retirement center in Carlsbad, New Mexico. After the couple retired, they continued to base out of Carlsbad while spending the next fifteen years traveling in their RV throughout the United States, Canada, and Alaska (accompanied by kids & grandkids).
In November of 2000, Howard and Carlene made their final move to Boise, Idaho, where their daughter, Susan Williamson, and son-in-law, Paul B. Zimmerebner, reside. After her husband passed away in 2002 at the age of 95, Carlene moved in with her daughter and son-in-law. She continued to be active in the lives of her children and great grandchildren and spent several months each year traveling to Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, as well as making a couple of trips to Mexico with her daughter Lynda and son-in-law, Randy Hall (deceased). Before entering the hospital for pneumonia the end of December, she spent four weeks in Arizona with her son, Clark, daughter-in-law, La Vonne, and their four children. Prior to that she spent time in the mountains of New Mexico with her son, Howard, and daughter-in-law, Marty.
Carlene will always be remembered for her sense of humor, her zest for life, her strong opinions, and her love for family. She will be greatly missed by both family and friends.
A celebration/memorial for both Carlene & Howard will be held the week of August 13, 2014, in Boise, Idaho, for friends and family. This will be followed by a trip to Arizona to sprinkle Carlene's and Howard's ashes on Mount Lemon where they had their first date.
To share memories with the family please visit Carlene's memorial webpage at www.cloverdalefuneralhome.com