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Gerald "Jerry" Benston M.D.


1927 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Gerald "Jerry" Benston M.D. Obituary
August 24, 1927 - April 2016 Jerry was born in the Francis Willard Hospital in Chicago, August 24, 1927. He was the son of Gertrude Pomsovy Bernstein and Jacob Bernstein. His mother was an emigre from Ukraine as a teenager, just months before the start of WWI. Her transition from Ukraine to Montreal and then to Chicago was facilitated by an older brother. In Chicago she was active in millenary work with which she had a natural talent. Following her marriage to Jacob Bernstein and the birth of her first child, Gerald, she survived only a few days after his birth. Gerald was raised by a wonderful family of the Bernsteins, two grandparents and several caring and devoted young aunts who gave him all the love a large family could give. He had the traditional bar'mitzva, at age 12; the customary age for a son without a mother. He was an excellent student; a leader, beloved by all. He graduated from the University of Illinois; then in those immediate post-war years served in the Army Airforce as a surgical tech. Always adventurous, he chose to go abroad for medical school to the University of Geneva, Switzerland were he thrived on the languages and the culture. Returning to the United States, he completed his Internship at Queen of the Angels Hospital in Los Angeles; following that with a Residency in Ophthalmology at Los Angeles County Hospital. He practiced in Beverly Hills but tiring of an office practice he then took an Anesthesiology residency at the new UCLA Hospital. He was an outstanding Anesthesiologist, every surgeon's favorite, as he practiced in several hospitals in the Beverly Hills/West Hollywood area. It was at UCLA where he met another young resident in the Division of Head and Neck Surgery, Charles Monell, M.D. This continued for the next 56 years during which they share a long and rewarding life together; sharing homes, life style, rewards, families, love and sorrows-ending just now, much too soon. They were legally married on their 54th "anniversary," February 3, 2014. Jerry was a very active participant in a multitude of civic and educational activities. Briefly to mention: Boards of Friends of Palm Springs Philharmonic, Virginia Waring International Piano Competition, Rancho Mirage Public Library, College of the Desert Foundation, Senior French Translator for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, and most importantly fund raiser and major donor for the Steinway Concert Grand of the Rancho Mirage Library Community Room. Jerry was laid to rest in a graveside service, April 4, 2016, attended by his loving family.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Apr. 13, 2016
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