Benny "Ben" Downing, age 89, of Dayton, passed away Tuesday, April 23rd, 2019 at Bethany Village. For the last 55 years of his life he lived in Bellbrook and Washington Township.
Ben was born in Holland, Kentucky on May 8th, 1929 to Kathryn (Brown) and Miller Downing.
He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Betty Lou Callahan. Ben is survived by his wife of 60 years, Charlotte (Haynes); daughter, Sharon Courtney and son, Benjamin Downing (Rhonda Henley); and 4 grandchildren, Robert Joseph Courtney III, Megan Eileen Courtney, Kiana Lynn Downing, and Benjamin Riley Downing.
To those who knew him best, Ben was a man of few words but those words were always worth paying attention to. He was a serious man but also one ever ready with a witty turn of phrase that left listeners smiling. His was a wisdom that came not from books or classrooms, but from years of hard work, attention to detail and a keen understanding of people.
Ben and his wife, Charlotte, raised two children and provided guidance and inspiration for their four grandchildren. He was a dedicated family man who led by example. He stressed, and demonstrated, throughout his life the lessons that hard work, humility, an easy sense of humor, honesty and integrity were the keys to success in life.
Ben had a lifelong love of Tennessee Walking Horses. For more than 30 years, he enjoyed showing his horses throughout Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and anywhere there was a Walking Horse event. He was also a well-known breeder and spent decades in various leadership and advisory positions in the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association.
Professionally, Ben worked in institutional food sales for several companies, most recently for the Ellenbee Leggett Company (now Performance Foodservice – Ellenbee) of Fairfield, Ohio.
The family will hold a Memorial Service for Ben at the Bellbrook Presbyterian Church on Saturday, June 1st at 4:00pm. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be sent to the Tennessee Walking Horse Foundation or the Alzheimer’s Association. You are welcome to send a condolence, plant a tree, and share a story or picture about Benny "Ben" at www.ConnerAndKoch.com.
© 2019 (Conner & Koch Life Celebration Home)
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