Cover photo for Jean Benckendorf's Obituary
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Jean Benckendorf

April 4, 1932 — January 6, 2018

Jean Benckendorf

MORTON - Norma "Jean" Benckendorf, 85, of Morton, finished a rich and long life on Jan. 6, 2018, passing away at Apostolic Christian Restmor in Morton.
She was born April 4, 1932 and raised in Fairview, Ill., the former Jean Wilson was the only child of Lois and William Wilson, who taught her to drive a truck at age twelve and to do the family store's financial books soon after. Jean grew used to getting her way, a habit she was able to retain, for the most part, throughout her life.
She is survived by three children, David (Dr. Sandra) Benckendorf of Berlin, N.H., M. Katherine Gallo of Sarasota, Fla., and James (Jayne) Benckendorf of Morton; seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Jean was valedictorian of her high school class of Valley High School, and first in her class at Eureka College, when she chose to leave upon marrying. At Eureka College, she was a member of Delta Zeta sorority. She continued to be a life-long learner, taking courses at ICC.
She co-founded and later owned and operated Mobile Auto Glass, Inc., of Kokomo, Ind. She was active in many civic organizations and projects throughout the years, beginning with a tea for JFK's presidential race that left Rose Kennedy apoplectic when Jean, chatting with Mrs. Kennedy, failed to recognize and compliment Mrs. Kennedy's PT-109 lapel pin.
Late in her life, with her mentation suffering, she could still astound. While discussing Canada's maritime provinces, she mentioned that the most severe tides in the world are found in the Bay of Fundy. Jean could always discuss the personal quirks of and battles fought by any general officer that served in the Civil War.
Jean was a loyal and active member in the PEO and of the Morton United Methodist Church throughout her adult life, including membership in the first cohort of Stephen's Ministers.
Her home provided a second home to many teenagers growing up with her children, who were welcomed, one and all. Many she "adopted" throughout the years, all remaining in her heart decades later. She enriched many peoples' lives with her kindness and lessons of love. Jean will be missed by so many.

Visitation will be held from 10 to 11:15 a.m. on Thurs., Jan. 11, 2018 at Morton United Methodist Church. A funeral service will follow at 11:30 a.m. at the church with Rev. Gabe Wanck officiating.
Burial will be at Roberts Cemetery in Morton.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Morton United Methodist Church Building Fund.


JAN 11. 10:00 AM - 11:15 AM (CST)

Morton United Methodist Church
420 N. Tennessee Ave.
Morton, IL


JAN 11. 11:30 AM (CST)

Morton United Methodist Church
420 N. Tennessee Ave.
Morton, IL
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