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Bernard 'Bernie' Benson Jr.

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[October 17, 2009]  Bernard O. "Bernie" Benson Jr., 71, of Lincoln, went home to be with the Lord on Thursday, Oct. 15, 2009, at Memorial Medical Center in Springfield.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Sunday at Holland Barry & Bennett Funeral Home in Lincoln.

A celebration of his life will be at 11 a.m. Monday at Faith Lutheran Church, with Pastor Mark Peters officiating.

Mr. Benson was a project supervisor on heavy construction projects in many different states during his career, then later a construction observer for Hanson Engineers of Springfield.

He was born on Oct. 27, 1937, at Prairie du Chien, Wis., a son of Bernard O. Sr. and Emily Blanche Straumann Benson. He married Patricia "Pat" Walter on Jan. 1, 1965, in Owensboro, Ky.

He leaves behind a legacy of love and laughter to his wife, of Lincoln; two daughters, Gretchen Benson of Houston, Texas, and Heather (and husband Jonathan) Blasey of Clifton; two grandsons, Nicholas and Ryan Blasey of Clifton; one sister, Kersten (and husband Bruce) Pett of Cambridge, Wis.; one brother, Rodney (and wife Bonnie) Benson of Madison, Wis.; several nieces; a nephew; and a multitude of friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents and one sister, Greta Fletcher.

He was a member of Faith Lutheran Church in Lincoln, where he enjoyed being active in special church projects, being an usher and helping during VBS.

Bernie loved traveling to exotic places, scuba diving and crewing for local hot air balloon pilots. He and his wife made crafts and enjoyed helping at Gail's Pumpkin Patch in Beason during the fall season.

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He was a lifetime blood donor and donated more than 30 gallons to those in need.

He was a fun-loving, humorous, lively person, full of creative ideas.

His family was the very center of all of his attention and affection. He loved his wife and his two daughters and had a special bond with his grandsons and loved spending time with them.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Faith Lutheran Church.

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