Frank William Bender, 83, of Brenham, Texas, husband of Audrey Louise Bender, passed away Nov. 14, 2013 at St. Joseph Regional Health Center in Bryan, Texas.
Frank Bender was born Dec. 15, 1929 in Sealy, Texas to Albert and Vera Bernette Garling Bender. He attended Sealy area schools, and was employed by Pennzoil for many years. On Oct. 7, 1950, he was married to Audrey James in First Baptist Church of Boling. Frank and Audrey made their home in Kingman for a number of years, where he donated countless hours to physically and mentally challenged kids. He was president of the Kingman Lions Club, and chartered a Lions Club in Golden Valley while serving as president of the Kingman Lions Club.
Frank had a special place in his heart for children. He delighted young and old alike by portraying Santa Claus for 50 years, and was the main attraction for children in many local Christmas celebrations in Washington County. Local memberships included 40 years with the Brenham Evening Lions Club, 20 years in the Brenham Optimist Club, as well as many years of service to the Washington County Youth Soccer League, the Brenham Little League Association and the Little Dribblers League. He was well known and admired by many young people in Washington County, and enjoyed countless hours enthusiastically cheering them on in baseball, soccer, and basketball games. He selflessly committed much of his spare time and energy to many young people in this area.
Survivors include his wife, Audrey Bender of Brenham, Texas; son, Ricky Franklin Bender of Temple, Texas; daughter and son-in-law, Carolyn and Donald Campbell of Brenham; grandchildren, Jason and Sally Bender, Joey Bender, Patrick and Angie Wallace, Clayton and Melissa Wallace, Rod and Joane Campbell, Jeff and Debbie Campbell, Shelly and Ted DeYoung, Steve and Jenny Campbell, Renee and Rocco Pepe and Steven Bender. In addition, he is survived by 20 great-grandchildren and six great-great grandchildren; brother and sister-in-law Earl and Mary Bender of Kingman, and Albert Bender of Madisonville; sister Ruby Dierks and Vera Yates and husband Arnold, all of Kingman.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Albert and Vera Bender, brothers Vernon, Wilburn, Lester and Harry Bender, and sisters Bernice Bender, Dorothy Fojtek, Luella Ludwig, Anamay Coker, and Betty Jean Harvey.
His pallbearers are Bill Dodson, Albert Bender, Lewis Fortenberry, Terry Sumner, James Sumner, Tommy Muessy and Terrol Womack. His grandchildren and great-grandchildren will serve as honorary pallbearers. Memorials may be directed to Brenham Lions Club.
Funeral services are scheduled for 10 a.m., Monday, Nov. 18 at Memorial Oaks Chapel in Brenham, Texas, with Pastor Ross Shelton officiating. Burial will follow in Evergreen Memorial Park in Wharton, Texas. Visitation will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday afternoon at Memorial Oaks Chapel.
Funeral arrangements for Frank William Bender are entrusted to Memorial Oaks Chapel, 1306 W. Main St., Brenham, Texas. To post a tribute to the family, visit memorialoakschapel.com.