|Birth: ||Apr. 24, 1949|
New York, USA
|Death: ||Dec. 30, 2008|
San Diego County
He would say that, in true Irish fashion, he won the battle but lost the war. Dr. Brian Bennett succumbed to ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) on Tuesday, 30 Dec 2008, at his home, after a very courageous three year struggle.
Brian was born 24 Apr 1949 in Rochester, NY. His family relocated to San Diego, CA in 1962, where he attended the University of San Diego High School. He graduated from Loyola University of Los Angeles in 1971 as a brother Phi Sigma Kappa and earned his juris doctorate from Loyola Law School. Dr. Bennett used his extensive debate experience and knowledge of law and education for the next 35 years, fighting for equal opportunity and quality education for children throughout the nation. He started his teaching in Watts, CA, continuing in Torrance, CA and Inglewood, CA. He was principal for five years at a Catholic school in Pomona, CA before returning to San Diego to serve as principal and 8th grade history teacher at Blessed Sacrament Parish School. His dedication to the College Area Community for 19 years extended well beyond the gates of the school.
As his vision continued, he ventured out to charter schools, being instrumental in the establishment of the Ridgecrest Charter School. For 3 years, he directed the Office of School Choice for the San Diego Unified School District. Most recently, he acted as Western Regional Director for the National Association of Charter School Authorizers. In October, he was honored with the Remarkable Leader in Education Award by the University of San Diego. We would like to believe that his legacy is the thousands of children, parents and teachers who were enriched by his involvement in education.
Time with his family was of great importance. With them, he enjoyed traveling, fishing, dancing, music and great conversations at the dinner table. An activity that also brought great satisfaction was mowing grass, whether it was his own front lawn or the acres of alfalfa on the Brehm farm in Kansas.
Brian is survived by his wife Jeanine, his wife of 37 years; daughter Amie Bennett-Duncan and her husband Ryan of San Diego; son-in-law Daniel McConville of La Mesa, CA. His daughter, Monica, died just two months ago earlier as a result of a diabetic coma. He is also survived by his brothers Jerry Bennett and wife Linda of Rochester, NY and Joseph Bennett and wife Vicki of San Bernardino, CA; sisters Rosemary Bennett of Portland, OR and Patricia Brehm and husband Russ of Hope, KS; brothers-in-law Kenneth and wife Barbara of NM; David and wife Terry of Maryland; sisters-in-law Annette O'Keefe of MS; Janis Bottorff and husband, Scott of Ridgecrest, CA and numerous nieces and nephews.
Published in The Daily Independent, Ridgecrest, CA 21 Jan 2009.
Holy Cross Cemetery
San Diego County
Plot: 10 Saint Peter
Created by: D. O.
Record added: Jan 30, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 33399425