Friday, March 27, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Ben French

By
From page A4 | September 01, 2013 |

French, Ben

May 30, 1923 – Aug. 23, 2013

Ben French passed away on Friday, Aug. 23, 2013 at his home in Davis.

He was born in Hanford on May 30, 1923, the descendant of early California pioneers. His paternal grandfather was part owner, along with J.B. Anderson, of the Davisville Cash Store, the predecessor to Davis Lumber and Hardware, and his father attended Davis schools during the early years of the 20th century. Struggling through the Great Depression, Ben’s parents lived in several rural communities in the San Joaquin delta as they sought to make a living. Ben learned to hunt and fish and, as an only child, found comfort and companionship in the natural environment. His love of the outdoors remained strong throughout his life.

After graduating from Rio Vista High School in June 1941, Ben worked as a clerk for the Bank of Rio Vista and later as an iceman for the Union Ice Company to earn money to attend college. He was able to enroll at UC Berkeley in the fall of 1942 and entered the Army Reserve program. He was called to active duty in March 1943, training as a paratrooper, and fought in France and Germany with the 82nd Airborne Division. Upon his return home in January 1946, Ben enrolled again at Berkeley under the GI Bill, completing his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in agricultural economics, the latter in 1953.

Ben joined the faculty at Michigan State University in 1953 and in 1959 he returned to California as an associate professor of agricultural economics at UC Davis. His leadership was instrumental in building the Ag Econ department to the top ranked program it is today. He was a dedicated teacher at both the undergraduate and graduate levels; many of his former students now hold prominent positions in universities, businesses, and government. His pioneering research is noted for its depth and innovativeness and has received numerous awards and recognitions. In 1981, Ben was selected as a Fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association, the highest recognition given by the AAEA, with at most four selected annually.

Ben met his future wife and lifelong love, Mary Loscutoff, at a Student Cooperative dance at Berkeley in the spring of 1946; in December 1947 they married. They had three children: Susan (1950), Ben Jr (1953), and Stan (1957). Theirs was a marriage of enduring love, friendship, and devotion to family. They enjoyed their world travels, camping trips, and most of all, fishing. They had a long, healthy, and happy life together, and Ben passed away peacefully with Mary at his side.

In addition to his wife Mary, Ben is survived by his daughter Susan French Weeks; sons Ben and Stan; son-in-law Ed Weeks; daughter-in-law Wendy Chan French; granddaughters Aubree French and Gillian Weeks; and great-granddaughter Bristol Bullivant.

At Ben’s request, there will not be a memorial service. Remembrances may be posted with Wiscombe Funeral Home at www.wiscombefuneral.com.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

.

News

Anti-gay initiative puts AG in a bind

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
County supervisors consider options for historic courthouse

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Two found dead of apparent shooting in West Davis home

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
New Paso Fino design trims lots

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

Co-pilot may have hidden illness, German prosecutors say

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Senate’s Harry Reid announces he won’t seek re-election

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Woodland police warn of kidnapping phone scam

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

 
Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Lawyer disputes police’s hoax claim in California kidnapping

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

Davis Flower Arrangers meet Wednesday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Sign up for Camp Shakespeare

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Empower Yolo offers peer counselor training

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
State loosens sex offender residency restrictions

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Neighbors invited to adopt Willow Creek Park

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

Sing along on April Fool’s Day

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

 
Three nabbed in counterfeiting probe

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A6

.

Forum

Can he get life back on track?

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Blame Reid for impasse

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7

 
Practice cancer prevention each day

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

Turnabout is fair play

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7

 
Be aware and be afraid

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7

.

Sports

UCD men edge Hawaii on the court

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
UCD’s Hawkins, Harris to shoot at Final Four

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Home sweet home: Aggie women win a tennis match

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
Devil boys grind out a net win at Franklin

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

DHS baseballers fall to Vintage in eight innings

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
DYSA roundup: Recent youth softball games feature big hitting

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Sacramento get its second straight win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Sharks get a key win over Detroit

By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

 
.

Features

.

Arts

UCD Student Fashion Association presents charity fashion show

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
‘Get Hard’ comes across as rather limp

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A8 | Gallery

Smokey Brights to perform at Sophia’s

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
‘Deserted Destinations’ is April exhibit at Gallery 625

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9 | Gallery

Monticello announces April live-music shows

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
Leonardo Tuchman’s work shows at UC Davis Craft Center Gallery

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

Sacramento Youth Symphony holding open auditions

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

 
Preview Art Studio Tour participants’ work at The Artery

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery

.

Business

Camry Hybrid takes a step forward

By Ann M. Job | From Page: B3

 
.

Obituaries

Celebrate Rusty Jordan’s Life

By Creator | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Comics: Friday, March 27, 2015

By Creator | From Page: B4