Jewel Elaine Benson, 82, of Lebanon passed away on Thursday, June 23, 2022, at M.S. Hershey Medical Center.

Jewel, or Elaine, as many knew her was born in Independence, MO on August 29, 1939, to the late Lawrence and Jewel (Ellis) Lowderman.

She was married to Norman Rex Benson for almost 51 years.

She was a woman called by many names. Her given name was Jewel Elaine, but her parents called her Judy. Her husband called her Stinker because when he was in the Air Force and had to be away, he would address her mail to his little Stinker all through her life. He even introduced her to people that way. She was Mrs. Lupner to her children’s friends during their high school years. Her many friends called her Elaine, and she became Oma and Grandma to her grandchildren, and those were her two favorite names.

They took camping vacations, and on one vacation in Colorado, they discovered an abandoned prospector’s cabin that still had a bottle of sarsaparilla in it. Maybe.

She worked at Skyview Elementary in Dallas, Texas for many years, and had a great many friends from that job. They would meet often for daiquiris, wine, or margaritas. When she would come home giggly from one of these gatherings she would say, “I’ve met my quota.”

Her nickname of Stinker led to a large collection of skunk figurines. She and her husband also collected clocks, so that every hour in their home was a jangling celebration. She collected spoons and her children and friends would always bring them home from their travels. Storms were measured in the number of spoons that fell off of the spoon racks all over the house.

Each time one of their children would have a baby, Norm and Elaine would be there to help out, even when the baby was born in Germany, or adopted from Russia.

She enjoyed stargazing with her husband, who had some very professional telescopes. They took their grandchildren camping out at an astronomy dark site in West Texas, staying up all night to observe the stars.

After her husband died, she still went on many camping trips with her daughter and grandson. She also enjoyed shopping at resale charity shops. She and Stacy were major stockholders in Jubilee. Her favorite times were when her children and grandchildren would visit, and she would make many traditional family favorites, including spinach salad, olive balls, something salad (also known as pink salad) and Friday night was popcorn night. She would drive miles out of her way to get to Chick-Fil-A.

No matter the weather, she attended nearly every one of Joseph’s soccer, baseball, football, and basketball games, reminding her kids of her days as a “band mom.” As a band chaperone, she often forgot that she was on the trip as a chaperone. She and another adult once rode the Murphy bed down at one of their hotels. She also once observed a mooning perpetrated by her younger son.

Surviving is her children, Dr. Steve Benson and his wife Jean of Ashland, MA, Maj. Scott Benson, USAF, (Ret.) and his wife Ranee of Jacksonville, AR, Stacy Benson of Lebanon, and grandchildren, Sophia, Nikolas, Mitchell, Matthew, and Joseph Benson.

She was preceded in death by her grandson, Gabriel Benson, and her brothers, Philip and Ernie.

A Celebration of Life Gathering will be held on Tuesday, June 28, 2022, at 12:00 p.m. at the AACA Museum, Hershey, 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, PA. Interment will be private. There will be a visitation one half-hour prior to the service.