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Frederic "Fritz" Benning


1934 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Frederic "Fritz" Benning Obituary
August 1934 - December 2016 Fritz was born in 1934 in Waverly, KS. After briefly living in MI, the family settled in Santa Barbara. Fritz graduated from Caltech ('56), married Sandra Lee Hawkins and settled in the west San Fernando Valley where they raised their three children. Fritz is remembered by many as chief umpire at the Northridge National Little League and a volunteer leader and board member at the West Valley YMCA. After Sandra died in 1980, friends introduced Fritz to Lillian Linnea (Doepp) Oliver, a widow herself, and the two married on Valentine's Day in 1981 creating a combined family with six children. Fritz's professional career included working at Spectrolab where he was one of the engineers responsible for the creation of the Nightsun® (most likely the searchlight you have seen over the years on police and emergency helicopters). Fritz joined Carson Astronomical Instruments, a startup company specializing in creating solar telescopes, and then eventually worked at several SoCal aerospace companies including Hughes Aircraft, Rockwell, and Boeing, where he worked on various high-energy laser projects. Through more than fifty years, Fritz continued his volunteer and philanthropic involvement in the community including the YMCA, Volunteers in Multiple Sclerosis (VIMS), The Northridge Hospital Foundation, and several SFV churches. For almost a decade, Fritz has been a member of The Bridge Bible Fellowship in Reseda and enjoyed participating in many fellowship groups. He was especially effective in sharing his ample life experience to mentor young men growing in faith and tackling the challenges of life. Fritz leaves his wife Linnea Benning; his sister Julie (Benning) Allen, his daughters Linda Beisswanger and Ann Marie Michael; his son David Benning; stepdaughters Robin Schoenfeld and Rhonda Oliver, and stepson Bob Oliver; grandchildren Ashley Benning, David Schoenfeld, Jason Schoenfeld, Blake Beisswanger, Kimberly Benning, Melissa Oliver, Brittany Beisswanger, Laura (Benning) Bangerter, Sabrina Oliver, Bryce Beisswanger, Joshua Michael, Jake Oliver, and Catie Michael; their spouses; and great-grandchild Collin Frederic Bangerter. The public is welcome to honor Fritz by attending a memorial service to be held at The Bridge Bible Fellowship on Dec. 27 at 10am, 18644 Sherman Way in Reseda, CA 91335. Contributions may be made in memory of Fritz Benning to: The Bridge Bible Fellowship (thebridgebiblefellowship.com), address above, or to The Northridge Hospital Foundation (www.supportnorthridge.org), 18300 Roscoe Blvd., Northridge, CA 91328.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Dec. 16 to Dec. 18, 2016
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