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Bernard A. Benoit

September 14, 1915 - April 25, 2010

SPRINGFIELD – Bernard A. Benoit, 94, of Springfield died Sunday, April 25, 2010, at Regency Nursing Home.

He was born Sept. 14, 1915, in Bourbonnais, IL, the son of Alphonse and Marie Reine Drolet Benoit. He married Doreen M. LeDuke on Oct. 29, 1955.

He was preceded in death by his parents; 2 brothers, Jerome and Paul Benoit; and 1 sister, Genevieve Zarza.

He is survived by his wife; daughters, Geralyn (Jeff) Staley of Paducah, KY, Nancy (Charles) Grove of Springfield and Lynda (Dennis) Geer of Centreville, VA; grandchildren, David & Alex Grove, Daniel & Emily Staley and Daniel & April Geer; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He worked at the State Department of Vocational Rehabilitation for 42 years, where he was promoted to Deputy Director of Field Operations in 1955.

He was a U.S. Army Veteran of WWII. Bernard was assigned to the Signal Corps from 1943-1946, serving under General Douglas MacArthur. He was in charge of communications for MacArthur and served with him in Australia, New Guinea, the Philippines, and Japan and participated in the Battle of Leyte Gulf. After WWII he served in the U.S. Army Reserves and retired as a Major. He was a lifetime member of the Knights of Columbus and was also a member of The Reserve Officer Association since 1946, the American Legion since 1942, and was the first World War II commander of the Kankakee American Legion Post. Bernard was a member of St. Agnes Church, a former board member of Goodwill Industries, and also a life member of Springfield Elks Club, VFW 755, and the Chatham American Legion.

Visitation will be held from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, April 29, 2010, at Staab Funeral Home with prayers at 5 p.m. Funeral Mass will be held at 11:30 a.m. Friday, April 30, 2010, at St. Agnes Church with the Rev. Robert Jallas officiating. Burial will be at Camp Butler National Cemetery, where Sangamon County Interveterans Burial Detail will conduct military honors.

Memorials may be made to Goodwill Industries.

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