In Memoriam: Kathleen Benjamin, a retired Bronx teacher

Former Bronx assemblyman Michael Benjamin announced that his mother Kathleen A. Benjamin, nee Conton, passed peacefully away at 3:35 a.m. at Calvary Hospital on October 28, 2021. She was 86 and a native of Christiansted, St. Croix, USVI. She came to the Bronx in 1956 and later married husband, Ray Benjamin, in October 1957.

After three children and ten years as a “stay-at-home” mother, Kathleen became a para-professional at the school her children attended, PS 130 on Prospect Avenue in the South Bronx. She went on to earn her BA in education from Lehman College in 1979. She earned her Master’s in elementary education from City University. She taught first grade in Community School District 8 in the New York City Public School system, primarily at P.S. 130, for 30 years until her retirement in 1997.

Ray and Kathleen Benjamin (seated in the middle).

Kathleen is survived by her sons, Michael, Lawrence and Vernon; her cherished great-nephew, who is a fourth son, Kenon Tutein, niece Denese Clay and friend Karen Mitchell, both of whom became the daughters she never had; daughter-in-law Susie Wong-Benjamin; son-in-law Stanley H. Willauer, Jr; grandsons Maxwell and Xavier; sisters Joyce Tutein, Lucida Robles, Inez Thomas; brothers Alfred Conton, Jr. and Vernon Conton; and a host of loving nieces, nephews, friends and former students.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Ray O. Benjamin.

Mrs. Benjamin’s homegoing service will be held at McCall’s Bronxwood (4035 Bronxwood Avenue/E. 227th Street) in the Bronx  on Thursday, November 4 at 11:30 AM. A livestream of the service begins at 11:30 sharp.

Donations in Kathleen’s memory may be made to Dementia Society of America, PO Box 600, Doylestown, PA 18901.

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