James Donald Bennett

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obit-Pappa-BennettJames Donald Bennett, known by most as Jimmy, went to be with his Lord on June 6, after losing a courageous battle for life to cancer.

Born Dec. 10, 1938, in Pagosa Springs, to Donald and Mabel Bennett, he was grandson to Dutch Henry and Ida Born (Born’s Lake) and John and Inez Bennett.

His youth was spent hunting, fishing and working in the wilds of Pagosa Country. He graduated from Pagosa Springs High School in 1957 and attended Fort Lewis College.

Forty-two years of government service began with summers spent on a survey crew with the U.S. Forest Service surveying roads still in use today in the San Juan National Forest. He spent an enlistment in the Army at Fort Benning, Ga., in an artillery unit where he was deployed to Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He spent the rest of his government service in the employment of the Department of Interior working for the USGS Department of Water Resources.

He resided in Durango on his grandparent’s place on Junction Creek for the past 57 years. He is survived by a son, Pat (Robyn) Bennett, of Pagosa Springs; a daughter, Sheila Witmer, of Durango; a son, Timothy Bennett, of Crosswell, Ore.; five grandchildren — Tristen Bennett, Kaycee Bennett, Andrew Witmer, Ashley Witmer and TJ Bennett; sister Lucille Alley, sister Donna (Charles) Formwalt, of Pagosa Springs; nieces Pam (Richard) Strunk, Melinda (Don) Volger, Jana Candelaria; nephew Bruce Alley; and their families.

At Jimmy’s request, a cremation was given and he will be laid to rest in a private family service in the coming days. He was loved and will be missed by family and friends. Our memories only partially fill the hole he left in our hearts.