Cathy Van Benthuysen (October 25, 1935 - March 14, 2024)

In loving memory of
Cathy Van Benthuysen
  • October 25, 1935
  • -
  • March 14, 2024

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Cathy Van Benthuysen

Catherine (Cathy) Woolston Van Benthuysen of The Villages, 88, beloved Mother and cherished wife of Herb Van Benthuysen for 63 wonderful, love filled years, was called home to the Lord on Thursday, March 14, 2024. Cathy was born in Trenton, New Jersey, the youngest of four children. At 15, she found her love for travel and fashion through weekly hour long train rides to Manhattan for modeling school.  After High School, she attended Centenary Junior College and Denison University in Ohio, graduating with a degree in Religion. While at Denison, she was offered and accepted a job at a radio TV Department in Manhattan.  This job brought her back home to Trenton and to her beloved train travels.  It would also set her on a course to not only meet and interview Martin Luther King, but also the love of her life Herb in 1959. They married in 1960. She was a loving mother, an amazing grandmother and great grandmother, a happy homemaker, an active member of the New Covenant United Methodist Church in The Villages, and volunteered for many organizations including Red Cross soup kitchens. In 1975, she would find her true passion in serving the Women’s Philanthropic Organization P.E.O. Heading multiple chapters in three states, she served as the Connecticut State President in 1997.  She devoutly lived by the organizations slogan “You never say NO to P.E.O.!”

Cathy is survived by her loving husband, Herbert Leonard Van Benthuysen and two daughters, Elizabeth (Betsy) Cook and her husband Hugh Cook of San Antonio, Texas and Judith (Judy) McCallion of New Milford, CT, her brother J. Rogers Woolston of Princeton, NJ, her grandchildren Kristen, Stacy and Brian, and her great granddaughters Elle and Emily.  Cathy is preceded in death by her granddaughter Kelly McCallion.

A celebration of life will be held at Freedom Pointe at 11 am on Friday, March 22, 2024.  In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Cathy’s memory to the P.E.O. Star Scholarship Program via their website, or phone at (515) 255-3153.  Arrangements entrusted with BALDWIN BROTHERS Funeral & Cremation Society-Spanish Spanish Springs, 352-430-1449.  Sentiments are encouraged at

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  1. Judy McCallion lit a candle:
    29 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 29, 2024 at 3:11:01 AM

  2. Judy McCallion lit a candle:
    29 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 29, 2024 at 3:10:21 AM

  3. Diana Verdun Braddom says:
    21 Mar 2024
    When I moved to The Villages from Philadelphia, Cathy was one of the first ladies in P.E.O. Chapter IT to welcome me. She was a dedicated P.E.O. in every activity, a beautiful Christian in her life, and a gracious hostess. She was a wonderful example to follow. LIPEO, Diana Braddom

  4. Barbara J Waldmiller lit a candle:
    20 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 20, 2024 at 3:23:27 AM

  5. Lori lit a candle:
    19 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 19, 2024 at 3:47:55 PM

  6. Colette Collins lit a candle:
    19 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 19, 2024 at 3:35:44 PM

  7. Terry lit a candle:
    19 Mar 2024
    Lit since March 19, 2024 at 3:07:19 PM

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