Elder James Virgil Bennett 1934-2002 Obituary

Elder James Virgil Bennett, 68, a resident of Beverly, passed away Sunday, Nov. 3, 2002, at 3:52 p.m. at Davis Memorial Hospital where he had been a patient since Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2002. Death was attributed to cancer.

Born July 15, 1934, at Beverly, he was the son of the late Alfred “Pete” and Geneva Arbogast Bennett.

He is survived by his beloved wife, whom he married on Dec. 1, 1959, the former Lorena Wratchford, who survives in Beverly.

In addition to his wife, he is also survived by one daughter and son-in-law, Mrs. Danny (Natalie) Yokum of Coalton; two sons, Mark Joseph Bennett and wife, Jackie, of Beverly, and Shane Everett Bennett and wife, Melanie, of Beverly; and two brothers, Jackie David Bennett and wife, Janet, Port Deposit, Md., and Fred Bennett and wife, Susie, of Akron, Ohio.

Also surviving are nine grandchildren, Alicia Carpenter, Angel Bennett, Mark Bennett, Kevin Bennett, Ryan Yokum, Krystee Yokum, Tracie Yokum, Rylee Bennett, Avery Bennett and several nieces and nephews.

Preceding him in death besides his parents was one brother, Delbert Ray Bennett.

Virgil began service in the U.S. Army in February 1957 and served for two years as a light weapons infantry man in Germany with the Sixth Infantry Regiment. During his military career he was awarded a Good Conduct medal and an Occupation of Berlin medal. After his regular Army duties, he continued service in the West Virginia National Guard where he obtained the rank of SP 4. He was discharged in February 1963.

In December 1956, Virgil met who would later become his beloved wife of 42 years and they were married on Dec. 1, 1959, in Oakland, Md. Several years later, they became members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and on June 28, 1968, they journeyed to Salt Lake City, Utah, temple where they were sealed for time and all eternity to each other and to their children, Mark and Natalie. Shane, their youngest son, was born under the covenants they made there in the house of the Lord.

Virgil was employed for 32 years at Labcraft in Beverly until the company dissolved. He then worked at the Elkins Wal-mart where he continued to win the hearts of all those he came in contact with. He retired from Wal-mart after seven years of service. He then had more time to do the things he loved with Lorena, which included visiting friends, sitting on his porch swing with the grandchildren and doing anything asked of him.

He and Lorena also enjoyed working in their yard together, which was always kept immaculate. It was noticed by the community and frequently earned them awards which included “Yard of the Month” and the annual Christmas Lighting Contest.

As a dedicated member of his church, he served as a counselor in the Branch Presidency and Bishopric for 20 years. He and his wife then served a mission together teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. In November 2001, he was again called into the Bishopric where he served until his death.

There are many Christians in this world, but Virgil was a true disciple, he never had a bad word to say about anybody, and was always in the service of others. No man was more devoted to his wife, family and values than he was.

Friends will be received at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Route 219 south of Elkins on the Beverly Five-lane, on Thursday from noon until 2 p.m., the funeral hour. Bishop Lynn Muhlestein will officiate. Interment and dedication will follow in the Mountain State Memorial Gardens at Gilman. The Tygart Valley Post 3647 and the H.W. Daniels Post 29 American Legion will conduct full military services at the grave site. The F.E. Runner Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements for Elder James Virgil Bennett.

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