John William Bennett Jr., 87, accountant, veteran

April 17, 2005

John William Bennett Jr., a self-educated accountant who worked at a number of companies before starting a home-based business with his wife, died of Parkinson's disease April 10 at Forest Haven Nursing and Convalescent Home in Catonsville. The Glen Burnie resident was 87.

Mr. Bennett was born in Philadelphia and raised in Annapolis, where he graduated from Annapolis High School in 1935. He worked as a bank teller before joining the Army Air Corps in 1941.

As part of the 82nd Service Squadron, 29th Air Service Group, Mr. Bennett was a parachute rigger. Within two years he achieved the rank of sergeant and participated in the Guadalcanal campaign. He contracted dengue fever and was discharged in 1943.

"He was so hurt that they insisted he be discharged because of dengue fever and the headaches that followed," said his wife of 62 years, the former Lillian Ward of Mayo.

After leaving the Army Air Corps, Mr. Bennett worked as an accountant and real-estate broker at various companies: American National Building and Loan, Mario Annello & Sons, and a company owned by Baltimore attorney Louis Singer.

From 1980 to 1999, he and Mrs. Bennett ran Bennett Business Services out of their Lynn Avenue home. "Whenever anybody had a little trouble with their books or needed an accountant, I did payroll and he did book work," Mrs. Bennett said.

The couple lived on Lynn Avenue for 46 years before moving to Glen Burnie in 2000.

Mr. Bennett also was a former featherweight boxer who taught boxing until age 82. He was treasurer of the Mountain Road Recreation Council, forerunner of the Lake Shore Athletic Association, and charter member and treasurer of Galilee Lutheran Church in Pasadena. He enjoyed jogging and walking.

Services were Thursday.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Bennett is survived by three daughters: Gail Bennett Eichner of Roanoke Rapids, N.C., Lynn Bennett Mangum of Brooklyn Park and Joan E. Bennett Scherer of Las Cruces, N.M.; three grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.

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