Gladys Marie (Call) Benson, 89, passed away on August 23, 2022 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She was born on January 7, 1933 in Grey Eagle, Minnesota to William (Bill) Call and Marie (Barrett) Call Williams. In the spring of 1936, the Calls moved to beautiful Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She and her four siblings, Russell Call (deceased), Lorraine (Charles Lovell) (deceased), Elaine (Norm Hockering) (deceased), and Dorothy (John Jessick) (deceased). She is preceded in death by her father and mother-in-law, Elmer and Esther Benson; brother and sister-in-law, Carl and Ida Benson of Dalton Gardens; June and Jerry Miguta of Coeur d’Alene; Jack and Maxine Benson of Philipsburg, Montana; Harold and Nelda Benson of Worley; Marilyn Lenz of Post Falls, and Tom of Anchorage, Alaska.
Gladys spent summers in Lake Coeur d’Alene or roller skating. She was a member of Camp Fire Girls and Girl Scouts. In 1949, JoAnn Johnson and Gladys taught and played music for PA’s and dance clubs. They even got to play for the Clark House. She graduated in 1951 from Coeur d’Alene High School.
In 1952 Gladys married Norman Benson and spent their next eight years at their home on South 19th Street in Coeur d’Alene and 53 years in Hayden. They had six boys: Richard and Peg (both deceased) of Post Falls; Stan and Virginia of Coeur d’Alene; Pat and Ellen of Rathdrum; Mike and Lean of American Samoa; Ken (deceased) and Sherry of Post Falls; and Bill and Stephanie of Hayden; and foster son, David and Penny Oliver of Arkansas. Stan spent 22 years in the Navy; Pat owned Benson Meats for 14 years; Mike cut meat and inspected meat in Alaska, the Virgin Islands and American Samoa – they now have two restaurants in American Samoa: Bill owns BMC.
Her large garden supplied vegetables for canning; their beef and milk cows, as well as pigs, fed the family while Norm’s skill at hunting kept their freezer full.
Gladys worked for Clare Pendar for 15 years as an assembler and line lead. She then worked for Kelly Services for one year and then eight years for Transector as an assembler and purchasing agent.
The boys became interested in playing baseball. Norm coached and Gladys kept score and helped in the concession stand. As the boys grew and left home, Norm and Gladys joined the Post Falls Eagles Camper Club and helped start the Elks Camper Club. They camped in the summer with friends as well as going to Sargents, the Cedars and the Beach House during the winter. They camped on the Washington and Oregon coasts; many trips to Jack and Max’s in Philipsburg, Montana, Jackpot and Elko, and David Oliver’s in Thompson Falls, Montana and Kalispell, Montana where Mike was living at the time.
Norm passed away in September 2013. Gladys continued to live in the home in Hayden until March 2016 when she moved to senior citizen living in Hayden. She met Wade Tombs at the senior center where they played cards. They had many dinners and breakfasts together as well as talks on the phone and in person. Wade passed away in 2020.
When Covid closed the senior center, Gladys and three friends (Helen Johnson, Iris Buchanan, and Donna Kislig) continued to meet every Wednesday at each other’s homes and had lunch and played cards. When Gladys was no longer able to travel to the other homes, they still played Wednesday afternoons at Gladys’ home. (Lots of giggles and gossip) if your ears were burning on Wednesday, it was because we were talking about you!
Gladys had many grandchildren: Patrick and Desie, Elmer, Christi, Victor all of Rathdrum; Mark (deceased) and Marie of Post Falls, Matt (deceased), Amanda (deceased), Melissa, Payton, and Owen of Hayden. She also has 13 great grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren. May she rest in peace!
A memorial service will be held at 5:30 PM on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 at Yates Funeral Home – Coeur d’Alene Chapel, 744 N. 4th Street, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho 83814.
From Yates Funeral Home