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Duane ‘Beno’ Benoit, 78

Duane “Beno” John Benoit, age 78, of Dassel, died Friday, June 4, 2010, at his home in Dassel.

A Mass of Christian Burial was Friday, June 11 at 10:30 a.m. at the St. John’s Catholic Church in Darwin with Fr. John Pearson officiating. A private family interment will be held at a later date.

Visitation was Thursday evening, June 10 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Johnson Funeral Home in Dassel. There were be parish prayers at 7 p.m. and a rosary at 7:30 p.m. There was also a one- hour visitation prior to the service on Friday.

Duane was born Jan. 12, 1932 in St. Cloud, Minn. to George F. and Frances B (Toenjes) Benoit. He grew up in the rural St. Augusta where he attended the Meyer’s school and graduated from the Kimball High School in 1949.

Duane was baptized and received the sacraments at the St. Mary’s Help of Christians Catholic Church in St. Augusta.

He was presently an active member of the St. John’s Catholic Church in Darwin, serving recently on the church maintenance committee. He helped with the eucharistic adoration, and was a volunteer to beautifying church properties. He was a 4th degree and grand knight of the Knights of Columbus.

Duane worked as a deputy sheriff in Stearns County. He continued in law enforcement and retired in 1994, after serving 12 years as the chief of police for the City of Dassel.

On October 19, 1961, Duane was united in marriage to Charlene Brengman at the Holy Angels Catholic Church in St. Cloud. Together they made their home in rural St. Augusta until 1982, when they moved to Dassel, where they have resided since.

In 1971, Duane started auctioneering; he had been the past president of the Minnesota State Auctioneers Association in 1979 and had been inducted into the Minnesota Auctioneers Association Hall of Fame in 2002.

After retiring, he was employed by the Gold Cross Medical transport to drive people to their doctor appointments, and was awarded the employee of the year.

He enjoyed restoring tractors, building miniature toys, loved to watch and play basketball, and listen to bluegrass music.

Duane was a member of the Toastmasters International, Rotary, Kiwanis, and was the president of the Dassel Senior Citizens.

He is survived by his wife, Charlene Benoit of Dassel; son Timothy (Sandra) Benoit of Dassel; daughters Mary (Steven) Levinski of Darwin, Susan (Timothy) Steuck of Dassel, and Shelly (Carlos) Mendiola of Dassel; 12 grandchildren; brother Louis Benoit of St. Cloud, sister-in-law, Erma Benoit of St. Augusta, and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by an infant son, James Scott; his parents; one sister, Lorraine Paone, and one brother, Harold.