Ronald Bensten

Ron Bensten, age 78, devoted husband, father and grandfather, passed away peacefully on February 1, 2024.  He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Jeanne; their son Everett and his children, Jackson, Abby, and Henry; their son Keith, his wife Libby, and their children, Patrick and Norah. He is also survived by his sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Cathy and Mark Geary, his nephew Jeremy Ludwig, and his niece Jeanne  McFarland.  He was predeceased by his parents Cornelius and Alberta Bensten, his brother John Bensten, his in-laws Lewis and Margaret Wood, and his nephew Jamey Ludwig.  Ron loved his family and treasured the time spent with them. 

Ron attended Warwick High School and was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the College of William and Mary in 1967.  After graduation, he worked as the Deputy Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity in Newport News (now the Office of Human Affairs) where he helped to establish local community service initiatives like Head Start and training programs for licensed practical nurses.  He entered Yale Law School in 1970.  After graduation in 1973, he returned to Newport News to enter private practice.  He practiced law in the Tidewater area for nearly 20 years, during which time he also served as a bankruptcy trustee for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.  In 1992, he was appointed to the Newport News Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court, where he was honored to serve as a Judge for 27 years.  He was especially proud of establishing the Truancy Court, which helps keep students in school.  He had integrity, compassion, and a quiet, gentle strength in both his professional and personal life.

Ron was a member of Denbigh United Presbyterian Church for over 40 years, having served as a deacon and elder.

The family would like to thank his caregiver, Sharon Newman, for her exceptional and compassionate care of “Mr. Ron.”  We would also like to thank Bristol Hospice for their wonderful care of  both Ron and our family during the past 6 weeks.

Visitation will be from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Friday, February 16 at Peninsula Funeral Home.   Funeral services will be at noon on Saturday, February 17 in the Peninsula Funeral Home chapel.  Burial will be private.

As an expression of sympathy, donations may be made in Ron’s memory to Denbigh United Presbyterian Church, a charity of your choice, or any family in need.


  1. Martha & Randy Elder

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to Jeanne and the Bensten Family over Ronnie’s passing. It’s been a long long time since we have seen you. From Lucas Creek to the present many good memories have passed. (I also read where John passed away).

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