Dr. Louis H. Benzell (née Benzeleski) "Lou", 86, born in Scranton, PA on December 3, 1935 passed in his sleep the morning of January 9, 2022.
The eldest son of two first generation Americans, Lou and his brother grew up being fully immersed in their not-too-distant Polish heritage. Lou's hard-working parents and immigrant grandparents impressed upon him the idea of fulfilling the "American Dream" of forging your own path to success. In search of his dream, Lou set off to New Jersey's Trenton State College (now TCNJ) to earn a Bachelor's degree in education, completing his doctoral studies at Walden University in Florida.
Although an avid lover of education and higher learning, Lou's true love was his high school sweetheart, Joan Fleming, whom he married in 1957. It was not long before Lou and Joan embarked on the great adventure of parenthood, welcoming two daughters and three sons, settling with their family in Mahopac, NY.
Lou had a career spanning many years in education. He acted as a mentor, a coach and a classroom teacher before venturing into the administrative end of education, becoming a principal and eventually a superintendent. He impacted the lives of countless students and faculty members.
In the late 80's, Lou and Joan relocated from New York to Rio Grande, NJ, to live out their retirement, with most of their children also relocating to the shore town in South Jersey as well. Lou and Joan became grandparents and although they enjoyed spending time with all of the grandkids, as it turns out, Lou was not quite ready to settle into a quiet retirement as "Poppa" by the seaside. He quickly began his full time second career in contracting, developing commercial and residential spaces.
Lou was an accomplished man who proved that when you are focused, dedicated, and work hard; success follows. In his later years, nothing brought Lou more joy than life's simple pleasures: spending time with his wife, kids, grandkids and great grandkids, hunting, completing a daily sudoku or crossword puzzle, exploring and discovering his ancestry/heritage, telling jokes and stories, ensuring that FOX news played on every single TV in the house at various incredible volumes and of course, following up any trip to the gym with a trip to the donut shop. Lou lived a well-balanced and rounded life and will be sorely missed by all whose lives he touched.
Lou is predeceased by his father, Louis R. Benzeleski, his mother, Helen (Kikta) Benzeleski, his son, Lindsay Benzell. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Joan (Fleming) Benzell, his brother, Dr. Robert Benzell (Jean), his sister-in-law, Donna Maynard (Brian); his daughters: Lauri Flemming (Ron), and Lisa Snyder (John); his sons: Louis R. Benzell and Lance Benzell. His nine grandchildren: Justin Vitti (Mariel), Amanda Vitti, Andrew Vitti, Heather Vitti, Dylan Benzell, Lance Benzell, Madison Pierce (Trace), Aaron Flemming, and Vanessa Flemming. His three great-grandchildren: Sophia Vitti, Riadon Pruett, Piper Vitti. In addition to a number of cousins, nieces and nephews, and friends.
The family will be holding a private celebration of life. Condolences may be shared at www.evoyfuneralhome.com. Donations in Lou's honor can be made to the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org)
A Memorial Tree was planted for Louis
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Evoy Funeral Home