Robert “Bob” Benjamin died April 15, 2020, in sunny
San Diego, under the loving care of his daughters and
hospice. He escaped the Corona virus but died from
complications of a broken hip. Robert was born on July
4, 1924 and grew up in Pipestone eldest child of Walter
G. and Mabel Benjamin. He contracted and survived
Polio, weathered the great Depression, and developed a
life-long love of hard work and learning. At Hamline
University in St. Paul, Minnesota, he earned a BA. His
years there were interrupted by World war ll. He
became a Navy pilot and navigator and flew in the
Pacific. Bob returned from service and married Betty
Mae Waidelich on June 7, 1947. Betty supported the
young couple while Robert attended medical school at
University of Minnesota. They moved to Oregon for his
Residency, then to Minnesota. After Robert joined a
small group practice, the St Louis park Medical Center.
Over the course of his career he contributed to its
expansion into a large heath care provider. He
mentored many young doctors, taught surgery at the
University of Minnesota, authored books on surgery,
and served on the board of the clinic. He believed that
family planning was a basic right and became an expert
in vasectomy surgery. He offered Thursday evening
procedures so men so they could easily recover missing
only one day of work. Along with their activism, Bob
and Betty shared a zest for life. Bob built a wilderness
cabin on the shore of Lake Superior. Later the isolated
retreat was traded for a cabin on Madeline Island. Bob
served on the Wilderness Preserve board there, as well
as pursuing photography, chess, gardening, tennis,
hiking and boating. Their love of travel took them
around the globe. Many road trips included visits to
friends and family, After Betty died, Bob married Cathy
Coult. She shared his love of books, music, and travel
until dementia overwhelmed her. Bob is survived by
four sibiings Walter Majorie Benjamin, Martha Willis
Unke, Roger and Nancy Benjamin, and Mary Louise
Bowen.
Bob was an enthusiastic member of Senior Tennis from
1997.