Gerald “Jerry” Lee Beneventi was born to Donald and the late Carol Beneventi in Des Moines, Iowa on November 22, 1958. He was the third of five siblings—Greg (deceased), Mike, Teri, and Dan. The family resided in Granger, Iowa where they own a still thriving car dealership. Jerry was a popular student and was applauded for his singing and acting abilities in several school theatrical productions. He attended Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa from 1978 to 1981, and graduated with a dual degree in psychology and philosophy. Jerry studied at the University of Kansas Law School from 1982 to 1984. He married Holly Huhn in 1982 and they resided in Lawrence, Kansas. They became parents in 1985 with the birth of Kyle and Kirby, and again in 1990 with Brian. Jerry and Holly later divorced in 1999.
While Jerry was a student at the University of Kansas, he became a born-again believer and follower of Jesus Christ. He took a position as a full-time staff member with Campus Crusade for Christ (CCC) in 1986. He impacted many young lives and gained lifelong friends. His CCC assignments took the family to Kearney, NE, San Bernadino, CA, Fort Collins, CO, and Hampton Beach, NH. Jerry moved back to Lawrence in 1989 where he was employed by another evangelical organization, The Navigators.
Jerry left full-time ministry in 1991 and began private practice as a mediator the following year until 1994. During this time, he authored legislation that governs mediation procedures across the state of Kansas. He entered the corporate world in 1995 and began negotiating contracts for Sprint until he left in 2005. Jerry landed a position as a contract manager in 2006 with EDS which was later acquired by Hewlett-Packard. He was a highly respected member of the HP legal department until he took medical leave in August of 2015.
In 2000, Jerry married Susan King. They enjoyed 15 years of marriage during which they proudly watched Jerry’s three incredible children grow into adulthood, started many household projects (completing only a few), travelled extensively, loved God, and served His church.
Jerry lost his 15-month battle with lymphoma on Wednesday, November 11, 2015. Our hearts are broken at the thought of not seeing Jerry’s face, hearing his voice, receiving his wisdom, enjoying his humor, or eating his delicious food. But we are bursting with an unexplainable joy at the thought of seeing him again in Glory—whole and healthy. Rather than dwell upon what we have lost, we choose to soak in the good memories that are too numerous to count. Our lives have been impacted by Jerry in ways that we don’t yet fully know. We are eternally grateful to our great God who shared him with us for so many blessed years.
Viewing will be held from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. Sunday, November 15, 2015 followed by the funeral service at 3:00 p.m. at Mustard Seed Church 700 Wakarusa Dr. Lawrence, KS 66049. Private Graveside will be held at Memorial Park Cemetery in Lawrence.
The family will receive friends at the Beneventi home 825 Missouri Street following the service.
Information on memorial services for Jerry can be found at: http://warrenmcelwain.cwgen.com/obituary/gerald-beneventi.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to The Navigators (http://www.navigators.org) or may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary.