BENJAMIN (nee Reid), Dorothy June

It is with great sadness and much love that we say goodbye to our beloved mother and grandmother, June Benjamin, who passed away October 30, 2020 at the age of 94 years.

June is lovingly remembered by daughters, Glaide and Catherine (Peachy), and son, Weston, as well as grandchildren, Morgan and Cassandra and daughter-in-law, Wilma. June was predeceased by her husband of twenty-five years, Lawrence (Benny) Benjamin (d. 1973) and son, Easton (d. 1975). She leaves behind three sisters, three brothers, and numerous nieces and nephews. June also had two goddaughters.

June was born to David and Dorothy Reid (nee Garner) on September 10, 1926 in Toronto, Ontario. She was the second oldest in a family of twelve. June finished high school in Toronto and aspired to become a nurse. However, the large family needed additional income during the difficult years of the Second World War, so June was asked to go to work. She developed superb secretarial skills and after the war, followed her younger brother out west to Alberta and lived in Calgary for a short time before moving to Edmonton. In the late forties, June met a handsome fellow named Benny Benjamin. They married in 1949. After their first two children were born, they moved into a house and had two more children.

Benny had a career in advertising in those years then became a concert promoter during the 1960s. It was an exciting time and June greatly enjoyed seeing the shows and meeting many of the biggest names in show business. She had a lot of stories to tell and it was always a pleasure to hear them. Her kitchen table was the heart of her world. She regaled many people with wonderful tales of the famous and the aspiring. And it was there that she read books by the great writers and wrote cards and letters to the people whose birthdays and significant dates were kept in a special book.

June was an active member of her community: swim instructor, figure skating program coordinator, and fundraiser for various causes. She was keenly interested in what her children were involved in: sports, travel, education, relationships with people and places near and far. She traveled with them to California, Hawaii, Mexico, Belize, Taiwan, and many parts of Canada. She loved learning. Her children remember her for many reasons, but the enduring image is of her being fiercely protective and always supportive and encouraging them to live a life of curiosity and passion.

June Benjamin’s greatest legacy is her impact on the many people who remember her kindness, acceptance, consideration, and poignant thoughtfulness. She was a great person who believed her place on earth was to make others feel good about themselves.

Family members would like to express their gratitude to the staffs at Jubilee Lodge Nursing Home, the Emergency Response Unit of the Grey Nuns Hospital, and Serenity Funeral Service.

In lieu of flowers, June’s family would like donations to be made to any of the following organizations: WIN House, Edmonton Humane Society, Winnifred Stewart Association, and the Canadian Red Cross. With the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, a conventional service is not considered practical. Notification of a celebration of June’s life planned for the spring of 2021 is pending.

If Roses Grow in Heaven
If Roses grow in Heaven, Lord please pick a bunch for me.
Place them in my Mother’s arms and tell her they are from me.
Tell her I love her and miss her and when she turns to smile,
Place a kiss upon her cheek and hold her for a while.
Because remembering her is easy, I do it every day,
But there is an ache within my heart that will never go away.

Serenity Funeral Service – North Central Chapel – 780-477-7500

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Tribute wall - a place to share your memories and condolences

Lorelei Kuchera

Weston, Wilma, Morgan and Cassa; I’m so sorry that your beloved Mother, Mother-in-law and Grandmother has left you. The few times I met June in your home, and shared in your special Sunday dinners, are etched forever in my memory. It spoke to me of the true nature of family; the embodiment of commitment and love. I offer you, Glaide and Peachy my deepest condolences, Lorelei.

“When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight. Some of you say ‘Joy is greater than sorrow,’ and others say, ‘Nay, sorrow is the greater.’ But I say unto you, they are inseparable.” Khalil Gibran

Wendy Soley

I think I was 4, my brother 7. I remember when…..
There’s that lady. She’s coming for tea again. This time, we were formally introduced. “This is Mrs. Benjamin”, my mum said. “She and her family live on the corner in front of the park”. (The park…the one Mr. Benjamin, or “Benny”, as he would come to be known, would claim sole ownership and demand we used it instead of his yard. But that is another story!)

She was so fashionable and glamourous. Perfectly dressed wearing beautiful earrings and a matching necklace. Her hair was as black as night and so shiny. Her green eyes really did sparkle! She had perfect posture as she sat in the chair. She must be a dancer. She’s got freckles! Do ladies have freckles? Gee, she’s pretty.

We remember her as an integral part of our upbringing.
Mrs. B. served as chauffeur, hostess, a leading member of the mums commando unit, medic, counsellor, teacher, and referee just to name a few of the duties of the day.
Throughout the years, we have never laughed so loud, long. and hard as when visiting with The Benjamins, She had the best laugh. Thank you!

Beatle cut-outs and music blasting on her front lawn, go-go dancers, painting “The Fence”, “The Honey Wagon” parked in her driveway, hawking concert posters and tickets, greeting throngs of teens and young adults as they invaded her home on a regular basis, meeting up with the late night “Milk Bandit”, and a stream of other noteworthy events occupied her life as wife and mother. She took them all in stride, never missing a motherly beat, and would weave them into hilarious story-telling. Again, thank you!

In times of great, personal loss and grief, she met those losses with absolute grace and dignity. Her decency was unshakable.

Throughout our childhood, teens, and into adulthood, Mrs. B. remained the same. Doting and fearless mother. Glamourous. Pretty. Accepting. Funny. Loved.

To Glaide, Weston and Peachy – your mum was simply the best. God is in good hands now.
With love,
Wendy and Len (Buster 🙂 )

Lynn Letros

Sincere condolences on the loss of your mother . I met your Mom at Jubilee when my mother was there until her passing a few years ago . At mealtimes I would sometimes join your Mom at her table for conversation and remember her as a very sweet , kind lady that always had a smile for me . Had I known that Benny was your Dad , your mother and I could have reminisced about the concerts your Dad promoted because I was also acquainted with him during that time . I came across a picture of your parents on the Music Legends of Edmonton site ……. your mother was a beautiful woman inside and out . I am grateful our paths crossed .

Seamus Secker

MS. B as know to me as a kid. will never be forgotten as a great neighbour and friend to my late parents Susan and Jim Secker, as well to my brother Paul and of course myself, and in those days I was know to her as Jimmy (Jim) and later Seamus and it will be her smile and kindness she had for us Secker’s that shined on me, from the time we moved in to our home at 8603 Strathearn Drive in 1970 – 2001 and for that she will be sadly missed but not gotten when we hear her name or talk about her, So God’s speed MS. B, Safe journey home.

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