Cover photo for Wilber Benner's Obituary
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1924 Wilber 2022

Wilber Benner

November 24, 1924 — May 22, 2022

A bright ray of sunshine was lost to this earth as “Willie” Benner entered his eternal home to live forever with his Lord. Willie passed peacefully on Sunday, May 22, surrounded by his family. He was 97 years young.

Willie was born to John and Katharine (Fink) Benner in Worland, WY, the 10th of 11 children. He grew up in the Hammond Valley north of Forsyth on his family’s ranch, learning strong work ethics and the value of close family bonds. He attended country school there, later attending Forsyth High School where he met his sweetheart Marge, who captured his heart forever. Willie and Marge married in 1943 and shortly thereafter he entered the Army serving during WWII in the Aleutian Islands. In the early 50’s they moved to Billings and later Bozeman where Willie worked as a drywall contractor for over 50 years as well as raising horses.

Willie and Marge danced across 70 years of married life, raising six children, 17 foster children, and being very actively involved in the lives of their 123 (at last count!) grandchildren, great grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren, who all adored him. Family was his life, and he was the center of all celebrations with his beaming smile and welcoming heart. No one remained a stranger and were welcomed as family. Annual family gatherings included cousins, elders, friends, and were filled with laughter and love he inspired. Our dad was a beacon of light, kindness, and generosity. He taught by example that a person’s worth is measured by his character. He graced us with his boyish charm, delightful wit and humor, and always with his deep love. We will miss you dad. Until we meet again, we take joy in the great celebration that surely took place in heaven when this beautiful man came home.

Willie was preceded in death by his wife Marge, his parents, his 10 siblings, and granddaughter Ondrea Benner. He is survived by his six children: Jim, Great Falls, Kathy Nyland, Helena, Karen McCloney, Lolo, Gene, Ulm, Ken (Marie), Bozeman, Esther, Bozeman, his beloved grandchildren, great grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Graveside services and inurnment for both Willie and Marge will be held at the Forsyth Cemetery July 23, at noon with a reception to follow at Riverside Park.


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Service Schedule

Past Services

Graveside Service

Saturday, July 23, 2022

Starts at 12:00 pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

Forsyth Cemetery

, Pleasantville, NJ

Inurnment for both Willie and Marge with a reception to follow at Riverside Park.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Burial

Forsyth Cemetery

, Pleasantville, NJ

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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