December 13, 1933 - March 12, 2020
Evansville, WI -- Robert Joseph Bennett, age 86, died Thursday, March 12, 2020 at home, surrounded by his family. He was born in Janesville, WI on December 13, 1933, the son of Francis and Josephine Bennett. He attended St. Patrick Catholic School in Janesville where he enjoyed playing baseball as a pitcher. Bob graduated from Janesville High School in 1953. While in high school, Bob was a member of the 1951 State Cross Country Championship team. He continued to enjoy running through most of his adult life. While still in high school, he joined the Navy Reserves. Eventually, he served in the United States Air Force, part of which he was stationed in Hokkaido, Japan as an air traffic controller. After his return from Japan, Bob married Helen Wollinger on June 1, 1957 at St. Paul Catholic Church, Evansville. He received his teaching degree from Green County Teachers College, Monroe, WI in 1960, and further received his Bachelor and Master degrees from UW-Whitewater. He taught in Beloit, Brooklyn and Evansville public schools. Most of his 37 years of teaching was spent in Evansville at the elementary and middle schools. Early in his teaching career he served as interim principal, coached basketball, football and track. He was a dedicated teacher who taught multiple generations of Evansville's youth. He continued substitute teaching long after his retirement in 1997. Along with running, Bob enjoyed fishing, traveling, going to the casino, working on crossword puzzles, writing stories and reading, especially Louis L'Amour. He was a big fan of the Chicago Cubs. He enjoyed spending time with his family, and loved visits from his grandchildren. He was a member of St. Paul Catholic Church, Evansville.
Bob is survived by his children: Robert (Miriam) Bennett, of Janesville, Ronald (Annmarie) Bennett, of Evansville, John Bennett, of Tucson AZ, and Ann (Steve) Johnson, of Brooklyn; grandchildren: Cristian (Rachel) Bennett, Brian (Brienna) Bennett, Autumn Bennett, Kurt (Madison) Bennett, Quinn Bennett, Thomas Bennett, Melanie Bennett, Tyler Johnson and Alex Johnson; great-grandchildren: Ryan, Maddie and Brooke Bennett; many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Francis and John; and wife, Helen in 2010.
A funeral mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, March 18, 2020, at St. Paul Catholic Church Evansville, with Reverend Paulraj Sellam officiating. Burial will follow in Holy Cross Cemetery Evansville with Military Honors provided by V.F.W. Post 6905 Evansville. A visitation will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at Ward-Hurtley Funeral Home Evansville, and from 10 a.m. until the time of service on Wednesday at St. Paul Catholic Church. Condolences may be expressed at wardhurtley.com
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Krysa, Chelsea, Lindsey, Cori, Rene, Kristin, Sarah, Jean and Taylor from Homeview Senior Care and Julie from Hospice for their extraordinary care and compassion