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Martha "Marty" Serrie Benedict
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Birth: Oct. 6, 1944
Jersey City
Hudson County
New Jersey, USA
Death: Dec. 19, 2012
Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz County
California, USA

By Shanna McCord
Santa Cruz Sentinel
Posted: 01/02/2013 07:00:47 PM PST

SANTA CRUZ -- Martha Benedict, a longtime Santa Cruz resident who helped blaze the trail for acupuncture, died from pancreatic cancer Dec. 19. She was 68.

Benedict was part of a small group who led the way for acupuncture becoming legal in California in the mid-1970s by convincing state lawmakers of the Asian practice's health benefits.

She co-founded the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine in San Francisco, one of the first colleges in the country to teach acupuncture, and served on its faculty for the first few years.

Born in Jersey City, N.J., Benedict earned a master's degree from the Stanford University School of Medicine's audiology department.

Her interest in acupuncture grew through world travels to places such as Indonesia and from friends who were also exploring the practice, her husband David Klemp said.

Benedict, married for 40 years to Klemp and mother of three grown children, moved from the Los Angeles area to Santa Cruz in the early 1980s and established an acupuncture clinic downtown on Locust Street that had a loyal following.

"She didn't negate Western medicine, she complemented it," Klemp, 71, said. "She was her own brand of genius."

By 1996, she created Benedictine Healing Products, making tinctures, oils, and salves that are distributed nationwide and known for balancing high blood sugar and protecting gums among other ailments.

Her passions reached beyond acupuncture and Eastern medicine.
At a lecture in the mid-1990s at the UC Santa Cruz Arboretum, Benedict learned that the California Pipevine Swallowtail Butterfly had disappeared because its host plant had been eradicated.

She set out to change that by working to create a "butterfly corridor" that would bring the butterfly back to Santa Cruz.

Benedict reintroduced the plants in her garden, and with Klemp has raised hundreds of caterpillars in wire mesh cages, releasing the butterflies as they emerged from their cocoons.

Klemp said there are currently about 1,000 cocoons at their home garden in Pasatiempo awaiting spring.

Benedict's creation, The Butterfly Project, involves using volunteers to create butterfly corridors throughout the county by planting the Dutchman's Pipevine and introducing caterpillars and butterflies. "She was always exploring," Klemp said.

Martha Serrie Benedict
BORN: Oct. 6, 1944
DIED: Dec. 19, 2012
EDUCATION: Stanford University, master's degree
CAREER: Acupuncturist
SURVIVED BY: Husband David Klemp; mother Josephine Serrie; daughters Maartje Eagle and Caroline Klemp; son David Dawson Klemp; sisters Lee Serrie and Dorothy Stern, and brother Heindrick Serrie.
 
 
Burial:
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
 
Created by: anne
Record added: Jan 18, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 103766297
 

Adding her LIGHT to the UNIVERSE.
- anne
 Added: Jan. 18, 2013
 
 
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