Bruce Benson, 70, passed away on Oct. 24, 2016, surrounded by his beloved family.
He was an enthusiastic and devoted husband, father, brother, papa and friend to many. Bruce’s joyful and optimistic outlook on life and devotion to his family and friends was with him right up to the time of his passing. Bruce was born in Portsmouth, Va. and lived in Virginia Beach for most of his life.
He was preceded in death by his father, William Meredith Benson, and mother, Nancy Robertson Benson. Survivors include his loving and compassionate wife of 41 years, Patricia; brother, Billy; sons, Christopher (Su) and Andrew (Jenny); and four granddaughters, Abigail, Charlotte, Eleanor, and Etta.
Before Bruce discovered his passion for construction, he graduated from Churchland High School in 1965 and served as an Army reservist for six years. He excelled as a general contractor and business owner. Dedication and hard work were enduring features of a successful and productive career. Driving throughout Hampton Roads, it is impossible to escape the numerous building facades, developments and structures that were the product of Bruce’s creative mind for design and construction.
Bruce was a passionate waterman, finding comfort and peace while spending time on the local waterways, especially the Lynnhaven River. He was an avid sailor, enjoying cruising down the Elizabeth River in the Parade of Sail for Harborfest on his Hunter 24 and voyaging out into the ocean on his Hobie Cat. His family has many fond memories of boating with him around the Lynnhaven inlet and dropping anchor at accommodating sandbars to pass the time. Bruce loved the freedom and independence he found on his boat. His love for the water was infectious and was shared by family and friends alike.
In addition to being an amazing husband, father, career man, and waterman, Bruce was also a world traveler and skilled photographer. Stunning photographs decorate the Benson household from the Rhine River, Cinque Terra, the Grand Canyon and other destinations as a memory and tribute to Bruce. He was always up to date on the newest camera gear and was always able to get a beautiful shot.
The family would like to thank the medical personnel and staff of Sentara Leigh Hospital’s ICU, Duke University Hospital’s Liver Transplant Center, and to all family and friends who reached out and offered prayers during Bruce’s hospitalization.
The family will host a memorial service at 12:30 p.m. on Nov. 5 at the Lesner Inn in Virginia Beach. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Richard Bruce Benson to Duke University and designated for the Liver Transplant Family Support fund. The mailing address is Duke Health Development, Attn: Marcy Romary, 710 West Main St., Durham, N.C. 27701.