Charlie Benton, 71

Charles E. Benton, age 71, of Sturgis, passed away Sunday, May 20, 2018. He had been fighting cancer for the past five years.
He was born Sept. 5, 1946, in Sturgis, a son of Guila M. Benton.
Charlie had resided in Colon and Sturgis. His early life was spent in Bronson, Fulton, Kalkaska, Mesick and Maple City, where he finished school. He received his GED diploma while in the military in 1967.
Charlie first married Sharon A. Day on Feb. 8, 1968, in New Castle, Ind. This marriage ended in divorce. On Oct. 16, 1981, he married Judy K. Fennell in Centreville.
Charlie was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving during the Vietnam War from 1966 to 1968. He was stationed 18 months in the 220th Aviation Company in Hue/Phu Bai, Vietnam, earning the rank of SP/5. He was a member of American Legion Post #454 in Colon.
When he returned from the service, he worked for Universal Diesel. He retired from Abbott Laboratories, Ross Products Division, in Sturgis in 1998, after 30 years of employment. He worked his way up in the company to supervisor of can manufacturing the last 12 years.
Charlie was a do-it-yourselfer, enjoyed maintaining his property and helping others.
Charlie is survived by his loving wife of 36 years, Judy; his children, Troy Lee (Bettie) Benton of Plainwell, Charles Evan (Megan) Benton of Grand Rapids, Christy Elaine Benton of Three Rivers and Brian Robert (Michelle Sobie) Benton of Sturgis. Several grandchildren; a sister, Rosemary Benton of Dayton, Ohio; his mother-in-law, Phyllis Fennell of Sturgis; and many special friends.
According to his wishes, cremation has taken place. The family will receive friends and relatives noon-3 p.m. Friday at the Rosenberg Chapel of Hackman Family Funeral Homes, 807 E. Chicago Road, Sturgis.
A memorial service to celebrate the life of Charles E. Benton will be held at 3 p.m. Friday at the funeral home, with Pastor Marty Burdick officiating.
The family suggests memorial donations be directed to Hospice of Southwest Michigan; or American Cancer Society . Envelopes are available at the funeral home.
His obituary is also at www.hackmanfamilyfuneralhomes.com, where personal messages of support may be left for the family.

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