Michael “Mike” James Benge, 60, always found a way to make others laugh

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Michael "Mike" James Benge
Michael “Mike” James Benge

OCEAN ISLE — Michael “Mike” James Benge, 60, of Ocean Isle, N.C., passed away on Monday, Oct. 24, 2016, at Lower Cape Fear Hospice Home in Wilmington, N.C., after an 8-month battle with brain cancer.

He was a great joy to his friends and family, and was loved by all. He never met a stranger, brought a smile to everyone’s faces and always found a way to make them laugh.

Memorial Services will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, at Seaside United Methodist Church, 1300 Seaside Road, Sunset Beach, N.C., with the Reverend Keth Lindsay officiating.

Mike was born in Gastonia, N.C. to James Daniel and Betty Joan Huffstickler Benge on Sept. 22, 1956. He went to school at Thomasville Senior High. He married Diane Himes Benge on Nov. 22, 2007, in Gastonia, N.C. He worked as a Pawn Broker for Cash America for five years. He was a veteran of the Vietnam Conflict and served in the Marine Corp. for 6 years. Later, he reenlisted in the US Army and served for an additional 10 years.

Mike is preceded in death by his father, J.D. Benge, and his mother, Betty Benge.

Mike is survived by wife, Diane Benge, of the home; son, James Michael Benge and wife Maria, of Holden Beach, N.C.; daughter, Sandy Nicole Benge and husband Lewis Lomba, of Thomasville, NC; step-son, Michael Jones, of Greensboro, NC; step-daughter, Leah Jones and fiancé Christian Flores of Greensboro, N.C.; sister, Phyllis Ussery and husband Richie, of Ocean Isle, N.C.; sister, Pat Hicks and husband Steve, of Thomasville, N.C.; sister, Jane Lambert of Thomasville, N.C.; and sister, Lynn Brown and husband Jamie, of Silver Valley, N.C.. Mike is also survived by his grandchildren that he dearly loved: Jalen Hert, Tyler Benge, Alana Smith, Cheyane Benge, Jaden Lomba, Candyce Benge, Sommer Benge, and Joey Jones. He is also survived by seven nieces, four nephews, 15 great-nieces, 15 great-nephews, and many other special family members and friends whom he loved.

The family would like to send a special thanks to his dear friend, Adam Humphries, who spent countless hours by Mike’s side. We would also like to thank Kelly Cardea, RN, who went above and beyond her call of duty to care for Mike while at LCF Hospice Home.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that monetary donations be made to assist with cremation costs. Donations may be made to Diane Benge (wife), James Benge (son), or Sandy Benge (daughter).