BENEDICT, John Archie

Obit John Benedict

John Archie Benedict was born to Stan and Esther Benedict, June 12, 1938, in Innisfail, Alberta. He was named, John, after his Grandpa Nolan, but Esther’s mom quickly decided that ‘John’ sounded too old for a baby and began to call him, Jackie. He was called, Jackie, for many years until he simply became, Jack. He completed the family of four, along with his older sister Ruth, on the family farm north of Wimborne. Jack had happy memories of growing up on the farm. Many of his memories included adventures with his cousin, Alex, who lived just down the road. The four double cousins, Alex and his sister Edith, along with Jack and Ruth spent much of their childhood together. He attended the Frontier School, Wimborne School and the Viscount Torrington School, where he graduated. In 1957, he went to Canadian Bible College in Regina where he met Donna Merner, from Vancouver. They were married in 1959. Jack worked in Edmonton for the Federal Government Economics Department, he and Donna lived there when they were first married, but then moved back to the Wimborne area where he farmed and drove school bus.

Shortly after they moved, Pamela joined the family, followed by Dawn and then Ross. In 1961, he built a house next to his parents to accommodate his growing family. He used no power tools and only used nails, not screws. He said that by the time he finished the house, his right bicep was twice the size of his left bicep. He filled many roles at the Wimborne Alliance Church including being an elder. In 1970, he headed up the construction of the new church building that was built debt-free with almost 100% volunteer labour. He often talked about raising the wood beams inside the sanctuary in a way that would not pass safety standards today. In 1972, Jack was elected as a trustee of the Three Hills School Division where he served in various roles for 21 years. He also served on the United Grain Growers board. In 1980 he lost Donna to cancer. 1981, He married Shirley Erion, from Red Deer. She was a widow with two children, Susan and Craig. In 1983, Jack joined the Canadian Foodgrains Bank board as the Alliance representative. He was instrumental in the founding bylaws proclaiming that the CFB was “A Christian response to hunger.” He served on the board until 2002 and fondly spoke of his two trips to Africa where he provided oversight to food aid for Ethiopia and Guinea. He served on the District Executive Committee of the Western Canadian district of the Christian and Missionary Alliance from 1982 to 1986. This role included being on an Alliance “Above and Beyond” team that sparked church planting initiatives in major South American cities where Jack and Shirley had the opportunity to tour. In the early 90’s, Jack and Shirley operated the Wimborne gas bar and convenience store, Jack’s Snacks. They shared great memories with the local community. Jack and Shirley moved to Red Deer in 2002 and although this marked a retirement from farming this did not mean he slowed down. He started a part-time job at UFA stocking shelves for their new store and worked until 2009 in the rental department. He was still able to talk “farming” with customers. From 2000 to 2010, He served on the board of the Canadian Sunday School Mission (now called One Hope Canada) both provincially and nationally, and provided support at Camp Silversides in Gull Lake. At Deer Park Alliance, Jack served in many ministries, including being on the elders’ board. He initiated the “Strong Hands” ministry there. Strong Hands has helped many widows, single moms, those physically or financially struggling, and others in need with their amazing handyman skills and muscle. Even with an artificial hip, a stent in his heart and a dozen other surgeries, He never stopped serving. He was convinced that lives are significantly impacted when Christians show they practically care. He went on three short-term missions’ trips, including two Samaritan’s Purse projects in Jordan. Jack accepted Jesus as his Saviour at a young age at a Janz Team event and heartily served the Lord until his dying breath. He was a true patriarch of the Benedict family and will be deeply missed. While in the hospital, his parting word to each family member was almost always, “Blessings.” His legacy will live on in his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and the many generations to come. Jack leaves behind his wife, Shirley, of almost 42 years; his sister, Ruth Richman and her children; daughter, Pam (Clive) Reynolds and children Christopher, Joshua and Meagan; daughter, Dawn (Garth) Nickorick and children Tyson, Nicole, Courtney, Andrea and Jordan; son, Ross (Ray Ann) Benedict and children Heather, Stephanie and John Ross; daughter, Susan Erion; son, Craig (Stacie) Erion and children Chelsea, Jordan, Elisha, Emily and Spencer; 26 great-grandchildren; Levi, Maeson, Taryn, Karra, Ethan, Emersyn, Amelia, Lennox, Lucas, Wyatt, Colby, Addison, Braden, Hailey, Payton, Lexi, Olivia, Merlin, Piper, Henry, Charlie, Owen, Everly, Jackson, Andrew, Carson and great-great-grandson, Lynken. He was predeceased by his parents, Stan and Esther; his first wife, Donna; his daughter-in-law, Julie Erion and many extended family members. Jack passed away peacefully on August 8, 2023 in the Red Deer Hospital. His celebration of life was on Monday, August 14 at Deer Park Alliance Church in Red Deer and he was interned at the Wimborne Cemetery. Memorial donations can be made to The Canadian Foodgrains Bank ( and One Hope Canada (