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Paul Benke
Paul Benke

Obituary of Paul A. Benke

Paul A. Benke, born on May 1921, died peacefully at home in Falconer on Wednesday (March 4, 2015) at the age of ninety three. Mr. Benke was a long-time community leader, a tireless advocate for education and an unapologetic supporter of both liberal causes and the liberal arts. He was born in Indiana, graduated from Benton Harbor High school and served in the US Army in the China-Burma-India Theater during WWII. He earned a degree from Indiana University and two graduate degrees from the University of Chicago. He entered the business world, rising to the role of President of Colt’s Firemans and later Group Vice-President of AMF Corp. He moved to Jamestown in 1981 to assume the presidency of Jamestown Community College and after retiring from JCC was the founding director of the Roger Tory Peterson Institute. Mr. Benke promoted both educational and economic development in Chautauqua County and his initiatives brought growth and opportunity to many in the area. He divorced and remarried, outliving both of his wives. His daughter died in 2001. He is survived by his brother and his family, his son and daughter-in-law and three step-children. A Memorial service will be held in early June. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Chautauqua County Humane Society, 2828 Strunk Rd., Jamestown, N.Y. 14701 The Hubert Funeral Home and Cremation Services is in charge of arrangements. You may send a condolence to the family by visiting Website by Billie Jean Hubert
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