Juanita Puckett Benson, age 81, lifelong resident of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, passed away Saturday, September 18, 2021. She was the daughter of the late Elmer and Evelyn Bowers Puckett.
Her parents instilled in Juanita the desire to always do her best. The excellent student majored in Home Economics and also appreciated English classes. Her favorite school project was a family genealogy book which prompted a love for family history, and decades later she compiled a two-volume collection of pictures and genealogy pages for the Bowers family. She graduated from Central High School in the Class of 1958.
Juanita and her high school sweetheart, James E. (Jimmy) Benson, were happily married for 61 years until his death in August 2020. Her loving husband would often say to their daughter, “Your mother has always been a beautiful lady.” Reba’s childhood Mother’s Day tribute lovingly noted, “People tell me how pretty she is. To me she’s not only beautiful on the outside but on the inside where it counts.”
A member of the church of Christ, Juanita loved teaching children’s Bible classes. For years she loaded her car with her daughter, nieces, nephews, and neighbors to take them to learn about God. She truly let her light shine.
The beauty consultant took pleasure in her work as a top Estee Lauder representative with Goldstein’s and Harveys. Later Juanita became a Mary Kay consultant and enjoyed serving many loyal customers in her charming Victorian living room. She held various offices as a member of both Beta Sigma Phi and Business and Professional Women.
Dear older women in Juanita’s life taught her how to be a kind caregiver and a gracious hostess. She loved reuniting and reminiscing with family and friends when celebrating special occasions. While she was known for the delicious cakes she baked, she was also talented at sewing, tending her flowers, and writing. Reading daily newspapers and mail kept her connected with those she loved. Sweet Juanita will be remembered for her warm smiles and her thoughtful cards with her beautiful handwriting. With picture albums and scrapbooks lining her bookshelves and family photographs on her walls, “Grandmother” greatly treasured the many memories she made with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Benson was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and three of her brothers: Wayne Puckett, Ewing (Butch) Puckett, and Jerry Puckett.
Survivors include daughter, Reba Markum and her husband Keith; grandson, Kevin Markum and his wife Karen; granddaughter, Kerri Sircy and her husband Bryan; great-grandchildren, Randy Markum and Harper Sircy; and brother, Dorris Neal Puckett. Her extended family and dear friends also held special places in her heart, and the residents and staff of Community Care of Rutherford County came to be like family.
“A Beautiful Life” is an old hymn which aptly describes this loving, servant-hearted Christian. In lieu of food and flowers, please honor her memory by doing a golden deed; “help the sick and poor and weak, and words of kindness to them speak.” Memorial donations to Sacred Selections, a nonprofit foundation which helps fund adoptions, would honor a cause close to her heart.
A private graveside service will be held at Roselawn Memorial Gardens with Kevin Markum and Bryan Sircy officiating.