Benson L. 'Ben' Foley
Dec. 22, 1935 - April 13, 2021
Benson "Ben" L. Foley, 85, passed away in Encinitas, Calif., April 13, 2021. Ben was a 5th generation Oregonian growing up on a farm in the Medford, Ore., area. He was the eldest of three sons of William M. Foley and Eula Benson Foley both lifelong Oregonians.
At age 10, Ben's parents encouraged him to join 4-H where he raised championship Duroc hogs. During his years in 4-H, Ben learned business principles and double-entry accounting. In 6th grade, Ben discovered that Track and Field athletics was about pushing oneself to continually strive for personal bests. That simple truth shaped much of his life thereafter.
Ben graduated from Medford High School in 1954. He attended Oregon State University on a Track and Field Grant-in-Aid and was co-captain of the Men's Track and Field team. He was one of only 30 Pacific Coast Conference athletes (now the PAC 12) named to the All-Conference Athletic Academic Honor Roll. He was a record breaking champion in Pole Vault. He graduated from OSU in the Chemical Engineering class of 1958. Ben remained an avid runner and was selected to be one of the 1984 Olympic Torch runners in San Diego.
Following graduation from OSU, Ben moved to Southern California for a Chemical Engineering position with Texaco. While at Texaco, he also actively served in the U.S. Army at Ft. Ord and obtained his MBA at Long Beach State University. In 1962, Ben joined IBM and was the project manager for the world's first closed loop computer control system in the Pulp and Paper industry. Later at IBM, Ben rose to the top of his sales class achieving the 100% Sales Club every year as a computer salesman.
In 1973 Ben married Fran W. Scharps, his loving, and talented wife of 48 years. They co-founded The Company Store, Inc., a national marketing and merchandizing firm. They worked side by side until they sold the company in 1985 to pursue other interests.
Ben is survived by wife, Fran of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.; brother, John Foley of Hood River, Ore.; daughter, Cari Chanin of Los Angeles, Calif.; son, Robert Foley of Jacksonville, Fla.; daughter, Heather Ikerd and granddaughter, Emma of Mission Viejo, Calif.
Donations in Ben's name may be made to Oregon State University Foundation Athletics (Our Beaver Nation).https://www.osufoundation.org
Please sign the online guest book at www.oregonlive.com/obits