GEORGE LESLIE BENSON

George left his earthly home for his eternal, heavenly home on July 16, 2019.

He was born in Chinook, Montana, on Sunday, March 30, 1930, to Edith and George Benson Sr.

He, his older sister Viola, and younger brother Leon, were raised up living on their farm in Hoagland; growing up in a time of hard work, lots of adventure, having close family ties.

George was always fascinated with airplanes and joined the U.S. Air Force in 1950. His first assignment was to Elemandorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska, which began his lifelong love for the "Land of the Midnight Sun."

When his tour ended, he left for Montana to attend Montana State University -Northern earning a degree in Education-History major. He hightailed it back to Alaska and taught high school in Anchorage for several years, meanwhile, learning to fly small aircraft.

His Piper Super Cub was hands down his favorite plane which took him on adventures he had never experienced growing up on the prairie. He began commercial fishing in Bristol Bay during the late 1960s and did not stop until the late 1980s, becoming a noted "Highliner" for many years. Flying, fishing and farming, especially gardening, were his passions.

George married Pat on March 14, 1975. They shared a close bond and love for each other for 44 years, growing closer with wonderful exciting adventures, and walking through trials together.

Another of his blessings were his two loving daughters, Vicki and Tracey. They were always close to their Dad and he has loved them deeply.

George and Pat retired in 1995, moving to Camano Island, where they built their dream home. George loved working hours planting and gardening, using his very creative instincts, cultivating beauty.

He loved talking with people, walking his dog, and sharing funny, interesting stories. He had a great smile and an exciting life to share with others.

George passed away in his sleep, at home on July 16, 2019. He now resides in Heaven with the Lord, his Savior. I Thessalonians 4:13-14.

George is survived by his wife Pat of Camano Island; daughters Vicki of Anchorage; Tracey (Don) of Hawaii; brother Leon (Jennylynn) of Colville; grandchildren, Kyle, Lindey, Leslie and Kelsey; great-grandchildren, Lily, Jade, Noah, and Paul; and the families who loved him, Holloways, Hamiltons, Kahlers, Bensons, Lingafelters, Downers, McGillivrays, Marstons, Kirkpatricks, Casper, and Wicoxon.

A celebration of life memorial will be held at 3 p.m. Aug. 11, 2019, at Anchor of Hope Community Church in Stanwood, in the Sons of Norway Hall behind Wells Fargo Bank.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Growing Gardens for Life, 269 Russell Road, Camano Island WA 98282, a nonprofit organization that teaches orphans to raise food, helps them put in gardens and orchards and in that context, learn to see God's love for them. 

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