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Mrs. Irene Jean Bennett, 89 of Hillman, Michigan died peacefully at her home surrounded by family on July 5, 2019. She was born in Flushing, Michigan on December 9, 1929 to the late, Frank and Arda (Hunt) Wicks. Irene resided in Hillman most of her life graduating from Hillman High School in 1947. With a strong work ethic, Irene worked as the first woman deputy for the Montmorency County Sheriff's Department for 10 years and also worked as a receptionist for Dr. Modzinski in Atlanta and held her real estate license. Most recently she worked at MediLodge of Hillman for 25 years and later volunteered doing nursing home activities and owned and operated Slender Quest tanning salon with her daughter, Patricia in Hillman. Irene was a member of the Free Methodist Church and the VFW Ladies Auxiliary Post 2356. She became a gold star mother after losing her son, Darryl in Vietnam. She was very honored to have all five of her sons, as well as grandchildren and in-laws that all served in the military. Aside from her work, Irene enjoyed gardening and flowers, bird watching, and time spent with her family. She made everyone around her feel special. She will be dearly missed.
She is survived by her sons, James Dodge of Walterboro, South Carolina; Clyde Dodge of Hillman; Greg (Brenda) Bennett of Hillman; daughters, Patricia (Brian) Klein; Diane (Mike) Orlando; Colleen (Greg) Gambs all of Hillman; 29 grandchildren; 53 great-grandchildren; and four great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, Frank and Arda Wicks; sons, Donald Ray Francisco Jr; Darryl Francisco; great-granddaughter, Rachel Twining; brothers, Arthur, James, John, Archie, and Frank Wicks; and sisters, Bertha Gary and Mabel Bentley.
Funeral services for Mrs. Bennett will take place on Friday, July 12, 2019 at 2:00 PM at Green Funeral Home, Hillman. Visitation will take place on Thursday, July 11, 2019 from 2:00 PM until 8:00 PM. Interment will take place at Hillman Rust Township Cemetery.