Ray Benard

29 Jul 1930 - 5 Feb 1996


Ray Benard

29 Jul 1930 - 5 Feb 1996
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A family was heartbroken. Their daughter, a young woman in the prime of life, had died in a freak accident. Her husband and their infant daughter were now alone. Two days after Coleen Casto Benard's death in Salt Lake City, J. Reuben Clark wrote her father Fenno a letter. Just how Clark learned abou
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Life Information

Ray Benard


Benjamin Cemetery

8435 S 3200 W
Benjamin, Utah, Utah
United States


Husband, Dad, Grandpa Till We Meet Again

Headstone Description

U S Navy 1947-1951


June 2, 2011


June 1, 2011

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Strength When Things Are Hard to Understand

Contributor: Simini Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago

A family was heartbroken. Their daughter, a young woman in the prime of life, had died in a freak accident. Her husband and their infant daughter were now alone. Two days after Coleen Casto Benard's death in Salt Lake City, J. Reuben Clark wrote her father Fenno a letter. Just how Clark learned about Coleen's death is not preserved in the historical record. Had Clark seen the obituary in the paper? “I want you to know how deeply I sympathize with you and your family in the great seeming tragedy which has come to you," Clark began. "I say seeming because none of us are wise enough to know what the future might have held for your beloved daughter." “I am sure her sudden passing has been a tremendous shock to you and yours." To say it was a shock was an understatement. While she bent over to take her infant of a car seat, Coleen was hit in the head by the swinging rear car door, the one she had just opened. She died in the hospital three days later. Coleen Benard had died in the unlikeliest of circumstances. Every day, a thousand--ten thousand--a hundred thousand--mothers opened car doors without any trouble. Coleen herself had opened the door countless of times without a problem. Why had the door not hit her hip, her side, or her leg, as it had for everyone else? Why did it have to be her head? For Coleen's parents, the death was unexplainable. No one expects their daughter to die that way. President Clark continued: "There may be in your minds the question which frequently comes under such situations, as to the why a young mother is taken in the bloom of her youth and motherhood and some old persons, decrepit, with a full life behind them are left. We cannot as mortals, by mere mortal intellectual processes, give the answer to this problem. But our Heavenly Father has revealed to us that we come to this earth, first, to have bodies provided for our spirits, and, next, to provide bodies for spirits which are waiting to come to the earth. It seems that the other factors in mortal existence are ancillary to these two. “Your daughter was provided a body for her spirit, and she also provided a body for another spirit to come, thus she fulfilled the prime essential factors of mortality. She was blessed in this because sometimes motherhood is denied, again for what reasons we do not know. “But the Lord is all-wise. He doeth what is for the best, whether or not we can understand what comes to us. I often feel that the whole problem is answered by that great declaration of Job: 'The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” In some small degree, President Clark understood Fenno Casto's pain. A few weeks before Christ, in December 1941, Clark received word that his son-in-law, the captain of the U.S.S. West Virginia, died aboard his ship during the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor. Mervyn Bennion's death left Clark's daughter Louise a widow with a child to raise alone just like Coleen's husband Ray would have to do their child. Clark often said that he loved Mervyn as much as he loved his own son. Clark had lost a son suddenly, unexpectedly, even as Fenno had lost a daughter. President Clark did not mention the death of his son-in-law in his letter to Fenno Casto, but he did wish the Castos the same comfort he had received in his own grieving. This comfort came from the same source. "Again, may the Lord bring to you and the family and to the bereaved husband His comfort, His consolation, and His resignation," Clark concluded. Fenno and Amy Casto, along with Coleen's widower, Ray, wrote President Clark a letter of thanks a few days later. "Please accept our humble thanks for those comforting, uplifting, and inspiring lines which you found time, in your busy day, to pen to us." It was comforting to hear from one of the Lord's servants. "We have read and reread them and each time receive greater faith and strength to accept the loss of our daughter and wife which is found so hard to understand." Clark had sent flowers, and had even spoken at the funeral, where he had offered still more words of comfort. The family was humbled. "Your flowers, together with the many others, the sweet music and the inspiring words spoken at the funeral have done much to transform a tragic experience into a beautiful memory." Source: J. Reuben Clark to Fenno B. Casto, SLC, Mar 12, 1953; Fenno and Amy Casto and Ray Benard to J. Reuben Clark, Mar 15, 1953, both in MSS 303, b 388, f 1, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

Life timeline of Ray Benard

Ray Benard was born on 29 Jul 1930
Ray Benard was 14 years old when World War II: The Allied invasion of Normandy—codenamed Operation Overlord—begins with the execution of Operation Neptune (commonly referred to as D-Day), the landing of 155,000 Allied troops on the beaches of Normandy in France. The Allied soldiers quickly break through the Atlantic Wall and push inland in the largest amphibious military operation in history. The Allies of World War II, called the United Nations from the 1 January 1942 declaration, were the countries that together opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War (1939–1945). The Allies promoted the alliance as a means to control German, Japanese and Italian aggression.
Ray Benard was 25 years old when Disneyland Hotel opens to the public in Anaheim, California. The Disneyland Hotel is a resort hotel located at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, owned by the Walt Disney Company and operated through its Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products division. Opened on October 5, 1955, as a motor inn owned and operated by Jack Wrather under an agreement with Walt Disney, the hotel was the first to officially bear the Disney name. Under Wrather's ownership, the hotel underwent several expansions and renovations over the years before being acquired by Disney in 1988. The hotel was downsized to its present capacity in 1999 as part of the Disneyland Resort expansion.
Ray Benard was 33 years old when John F. Kennedy was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas, Texas; hours later, Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn in aboard Air Force One as the 36th President of the United States. John Fitzgerald Kennedy, commonly referred to by his initials JFK, was an American politician who served as the 35th President of the United States from January 1961 until his assassination in November 1963. He served at the height of the Cold War, and the majority of his presidency dealt with managing relations with the Soviet Union. As a member of the Democratic Party, Kennedy represented the state of Massachusetts in the United States House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate prior to becoming president.
Ray Benard was 47 years old when Star Wars is released in theaters. Star Wars is a 1977 American epic space opera film written and directed by George Lucas. It is the first film in the original Star Wars trilogy and the beginning of the Star Wars franchise. Starring Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Cushing, Alec Guinness, David Prowse, James Earl Jones, Anthony Daniels, Kenny Baker, and Peter Mayhew, the film focuses on the Rebel Alliance, led by Princess Leia (Fisher), and its attempt to destroy the Galactic Empire's space station, the Death Star.
Ray Benard was 59 years old when Cold War: Fall of the Berlin Wall: East Germany opens checkpoints in the Berlin Wall, allowing its citizens to travel to West Berlin. The Berlin Wall was a guarded concrete barrier that physically and ideologically divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989. Constructed by the German Democratic Republic, starting on 13 August 1961, the Wall cut off West Berlin from virtually all of surrounding East Germany and East Berlin until government officials opened it in November 1989. Its demolition officially began on 13 June 1990 and finished in 1992. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, accompanied by a wide area that contained anti-vehicle trenches, "fakir beds" and other defenses. The Eastern Bloc portrayed the Wall as protecting its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the "will of the people" in building a socialist state in East Germany.
Ray Benard died on 5 Feb 1996 at the age of 65
Grave record for Ray Benard (29 Jul 1930 - 5 Feb 1996), BillionGraves Record 7728 Benjamin, Utah, Utah, United States