This past week Team Evesham suffered a great loss when Dave Bennis passed away suddenly at his home. Dave was 78 years old and had enjoyed a Team Evesham Ride earlier that day with Teammates and coffee with friends afterwards.
Dave was an integral part of Team Evesham for many years. He was not only a ride leader, he was a Founding Board Member, past Vice President and a team mentor to so many cyclists in the club. His internal and behind the scene work for Team Evesham will never be forgotten.
Dave’s Cycling Advocacy stretched well beyond Team Evesham. He sat on the board of the American Cancer Society Ride and helped to better that event to what it is today. Besides that ride Dave was also a board member for the Move For Mental Health Ride, The Urban Promise Ride and The Bike For Bancroft Ride.
Dave helped mentor many youth in cycling. He was a mentor to Team Evesham Member Sami Sorid and helped her with cycling and to develop and promote her own charity ride the Move For Mental Health. He also worked with Teammate Kurt Comber to earn his cycling merit badge in Boy Scouts to help him Achieve Eagle Scout. Dave also worked with youth in Urban Promise.
This past Sunday, we had over 45 Teammates join us to ride, along with several team members and friends that attended solely to honor our departed friend and teammate, Dave Bennis. Team President Scott Santos offered some words of remembrance for Dave followed by a moment of silence in his honor. Following the moment of silence teammate Dave Dilks played Amazing Grace on the bagpipes for friends, family and teammates.
On a final note, a common thought among teammates even in our stunned and saddened state of learning of Dave’s passing was that we all found some solace in the fact that on the last morning of Dave Bennis’ life he was able to do something he really enjoyed, ride his bike. Rich Bernstein and Ross Polinow led the Friday ride that morning and will tell you first hand that Dave rode strong like the inspirational 78 year old that we all knew and admired.
Dave will always be in our hearts and never forgotten!
More about Dave
David Henry Bennis, 78, of Medford, NJ, died at home on Friday, October 9, 2020.
Dave grew up in Point Pleasant and started his professional career at 15 years old when he worked at Jenkinson’s on the boardwalk. He graduated from Monmouth College in 1965 with a BS in mathematics and went on to work for Reliance Insurance Co. in Philadelphia while residing in Cherry Hill.
He was subsequently hired by RCA as a computer programmer and worked there for 17 years. He was part of the team responsible for the 1976 Presidential election coverage produced by NBC television. This was the first time tv stations televised election results on the large color coded maps.
While living in Medford, he was then recruited by North American Philips to run their U.S. Data Center, commuting by bus every day to their headquarters in New York City. Finishing his career at DecisionOne in Malvern, PA, retiring in 2010.
Dave rode into retirement when he joined the Team Evesham cycling club reviving his passion for riding. As a team member he donated his time on their Board, served on charity bike ride committees, led rides, provided route maps, welcomed and mentored all newcomers to the club and sport. He became their ambassador for safe cycling at the local and state levels, including advocating for bike lanes and cycling information in driving manuals. The new NJ driver’s manuals now include instructions for driving safely past cyclists.
Throughout his life his interests ranged from amateur photography, including a basement darkroom, woodworking in his garage shop, skiing, watching tennis, the Eagles and 76ers, sailing on the Chesapeake, and listening to music. Warren Zevon was for putting lights on the Christmas tree, of course, Arlo Guthrie’s Alice’s Restaurant for Thanksgiving and Coltrane or Brubeck were his choices when cooking dinner.
Being well informed, each morning he read two newspapers and checked the news online. He enjoyed reading about history and science fiction, though he enjoyed gourmet food and fine wine, his favorite dinners were pairing beer with either pizza or Doritos and he loved desserts. His love for his family was never hidden, spending any time he could with his grandkids riding waves in the ocean or just talking and he treated everyone he met with dignity and respect.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Judith DiBiase Bennis, their daughters, Jill, of Germantown, MD, and Donna of Hockessin, DE., his sister, Diane Biel Kupisioski of Cream Ridge, NJ, and by the four grandchildren who called him Papa/Johnson, Alex, Elias, Hunter and Chelsea, along with his nieces and nephew.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Mathis Funeral Home in Medford, NJ.
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