June 27, 1929 – September 29, 2021
Benno was born on June 27th, 1929 in Nelson BC to Peter and Anna Friesen, the last of seven children. The family moved to Rosthern, SK, during the height of the depression, to find work and be with family. In 1939 the family packed up and headed to Langley BC, where they purchased land and grew strawberries. Benno loved learning but was forced to quit school in grade 9 to help support the family, which he did by working in sawmills. Just down the street, he met neighbour Marjorie Janzen, whom he fell head over heels in love with. Wanting to better himself, Benno completed high school at age 23.
He and Marge married in 1952 and shortly thereafter headed to North Western University, in Chicago, where he graduated with a BA in History and English. During this time their daughter Cyndi was born.
After graduating, the Friesens headed to Iowa where Benno took a position teaching in a Middle school. It was here, in Clinton, where their second and final child was born, Lynne.
After a few years word reached Benno and Marge that Trinity Western University, a new junior college in Langley BC, was being formed. Benno joined the faculty, and in 1962 the family moved back to Langley, BC. He remained at Trinity until 1974 when he won the Federal Election becoming the Progressive Conservative Party’s Member of Parliament for the Surrey – White Rock district. During his tenure at Trinity, both he and Marge made many close, long-lasting friendships that stayed strong until his passing.
His years in Ottawa were rewarding to him – he loved serving his constituents through his duties as their representative, serving all Canadian citizens to the best of his abilities in all he did. Some of his notable local achievements are initiating the promenade along White Rock beach by using paving bricks from Expo 86, securing funds from the federal government, to save the pier and dredging the waters in Crescent Beach for boaters to access a marina.
In 1993 Benno opted for retirement over seeking re-election. He and Marge spent their time catching up with friends and family, in fellowship at St. Johns Anglican Vancouver Church, golfing, and simply being together. Their favourite pastime was spending time with their kids, grandkids and eventually great-grandkids.
Benno went to be with his Lord and Saviour on September 29, 2021, re-joining his wife who had passed in 2019. He is survived by Cyndi (Bernie) Scholz and Lynne (Mark) Pettigrew. Grandchildren Corban, (Cammy), Aubrey (Spencer), Caroline and Davis Scholz and Andrew (Harveen), Hannah Griffith, Brittney (Tim) McAra as well as two great grandchildren Norah and Charlie McAra and many nieces and nephews.
“…. Now is the time for grief, but I will see you again” John 16:22
Funeral arrangements have been made by Alternative Funeral Services in Aldergrove. A memorial service will be held at 1 pm on Monday October 18th at Peace Portal Alliance Church 15128 27B Ave., Surrey. Please note that due to Covid-19 there will be no post-service refreshments, and masks will be required throughout the ceremony.
Livestream Service: bennofriesenmemorial.online.church
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Benno Friesen Scholarship Fund for Political Science at Trinity Western University.