The family of Annette Jenkins Benson will celebrate her 80th birthday the weekend of April 27 and 28. Friends and relatives are invited to visit with Annette at an open house on Sunday, April 28, between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. at her home in Newton.

Annette was born in the Logan Hospital to Allan and VeNeal Jenkins of Newton on May 2, 1939. She was raised in Newton, along with her brothers, Robert and Van, where their parents operated a successful farm and sheep business.

She attended school in Newton and Smithfield and then North Cache High School, from which she graduated in 1957. Afterward, she attended Utah State and had plans to pursue a degree in education.

Those plans were put on hold in 1958, when she co-starred in a Newton Ward road show with Mark Benson. They enjoyed their roles together so much that they were soon engaged. They married in June of 1959 in the Logan LDS Temple and spent nearly fifty years together before Mark passed away in early 2009.

In addition to her full-time work as a mother and homemaker, Annette followed both her father and mother in operating the United Suffolk Sheep Association, a non-profit business devoted to registration and promotion of the Suffolk breed. She enjoyed the work a great deal over a period of 33 years (the last 12 as executive secretary), especially the friendships she developed with her co-workers and with clients from many parts of the United States. It led to her being listed in the 16th edition of “Who’s Who” as an administrative support professional. Upon her retirement in November 2010, she was honored for outstanding service at an Association dinner in Louisville, Kentucky.

Throughout her life, Annette has enjoyed opportunities to serve in the church and the community. She recalls fondly her service with others in a variety of church callings, as well as her associations with many wonderful friends in organizations such as the Young Homemakers, Literary Club and Daughters of the Utah Pioneers.

Annette will tell you that she has found her greatest joy in life as a wife, mother and grandmother, and in the love of her family and friends. She also will tell you that you have to be able to laugh to get through this life — and she sets the example with her own lovely sense of humor. Her two children, Andrea (Varlo) Davenport and Bryan (Kristina) Benson, want her to know how much they love and appreciate all of her wonderful qualities, including that sense of humor. To her nine grandchildren she is, and always will be, the “best grandma in the cosmos.”

Thank you, Mom (Grandma), for everything! We love you! Happy Birthday.

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