Jack Aye Bennett
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Jack Aye Bennett
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Jack Aye Bennett, COL (Retired)

Jack was born May 22, 1944 to Clarence "Lefty" and Bessie Leanda Bennett and passed away on May 23, 2024, at his home.

Jack began his military career in ROTC at IUP, graduating with a BS degree in Business Education and was commissioned a 2Lt on 7 August 1966 as a Quartermaster Officer. After training at Ft. Bragg, NC, he was assigned duty in Vietnam. After being assigned to several different stations in the US Army Reserve and receiving Outstanding Achievement for several operations, he was able to retire in 1999 with dual status as a Staff Supervisory Technician on the civilian side and as a Colonel in the Army Reserves.

Jack was a member/President of the Armstrong County Tourist Bureau Board; member of DKI (Kittanning Business Association); Kittanning YMCA board member/President at the former YMCA; member of Folk Festival Board for over 25 years. He ran the Downtown Kittanning Car Cruise for many years as well as being responsible for organizing several different car shows in the area. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge and the VFW Post 4843.

Jack was an active member of Shannock Valley AACA and loved the tours in the antique/classic cars. Over the years Jack owned and drove many classic Corvettes which was his first love of cars but all his classics had to be Chevy - except for one- a 1980 VW Beetle.

His fondest memories were of driving to national car shows and TCA national train shows with John & Virginia. The trips were memorable as John & Virginia never failed to entertain him while he was driving. He often said, "It was like having two 8-year olds in the backseat".

When he moved back to the Kittanning area and couldn't find someone to repair his model train engine, Jack bought a repair manual; and his hobby became a part-time business as Jack's Tracks Train Shop. Sharing his love for model trains with all his customers included a panic call on Dec. 24 one year from a dad who couldn't get his son's new train running. Jack opened his shop and helped Santa get the engine running for Christmas morning. The shop was in business for over 50 years until he had to close as his Parkinson's was taking its toll on his hands.

Jack was a long-time member of Manorville United Methodist Church and his family helped build the present church in 1932. He held several offices, including President of trustees, member of Staff Pastor Parish Relations Committee, Administrative Council Chair, Certified Lay Speaker and Lay Leader. Jack was on several Indiana District Committees for the UM Church- thanks to Rev. Pat Cleary, who encouraged him to explore his gifts of leadership in the church.

Jack was active in the Ford City Food Bank since 1999. He enjoyed eating at several local restaurants and supporting the wait staff at each.

He was especially proud of Lu's quilting of five patriotic quilts that were awarded under Quilts of Valor to a member of each of the five Armed Forces at the Fort Armstrong Folk Festival 50th Anniversary.

To congratulate Jack on his contributions to Armstrong County, the Board of Commissioners honored him by adopting January 4, 2018 as "Mr. Jack Bennett Day". They stated, "Mr. Bennett's Accomplishments and Achievements are many and prove that he truly believes in and loves Armstrong County."

Jack is survived by his wife of over 41 years, Luella (Lu) (Adams) Bennett; sisters-in-law, Marian Falcone of Rochester; NY, Kathleen Voigt of Kittanning; Luretta (Marvin) Ray of Bluffton, SC; Virginia (John) Piscolish of Yatesboro; brothers-in-law LeRoy (Deborah) Adams of Templeton; Tom Adams of Templeton; Tim (Moe) Adams of Marion Center; and Ted (Bonnie) Adams of Dayton; and two aunts, Lois Bennett and Marybelle Bennett both of Kittanning. Jack will be missed by many loving nieces, nephews and cousins.

He is also survived by children, John Andrew (Lori) Bennett and Ann Catherine (Jim) Allison and grandchildren, Leland Bennett and Liesel Allison.

Preceding him in death were his parents, an older brother who died at birth; brothers-in-law Charles Falcone, Arthur Floyd Adams and Paul Voigt; sister-in-law, Fran Adams; nephews Joe Falcone and Rob Adams; and nieces, Cindi LeMay and Michele Adams.

Funeral Home visitation will be at Bauer Funeral Home, 515 N. McKean St., Kittanning, PA from 5 to 8 PM on Tuesday, May 28, 2024.

Additional visitation will be held from 10 AM until the time of services at 11 AM on Wednesday, May 29, 2024 at the funeral home with Rev. Terri Wells officiating.

Appreciation is expressed for the excellent care given to Jack by the Good Samaritan hospice nursing staff.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in Jack's memory to American Parkinson Disease Association, P.O. Box 61420, Staten Island, NY 10306; Wounded Warrior Project, Donor Care Center, PO Box 758541, Topeka, KS 66675-8541; or Armstrong County Community Foundation, 220 South Jefferson Street, Kittanning, PA for the JAB Golf Scholarship Fund to be awarded to a local high school golfer from Armstrong or West Shamokin High School.

Jack will be buried with full military honors at Lawn Haven Cemetery.

There will be a Celebration of Life luncheon held for Jack at the Covenant Center on N. Water Street in Kittanning following the graveside service.

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Jack Aye Bennett
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