Obituary: Dorothy Mae Benson, 81, Pizzeria Owner, Toll Collector, ARC Volunteer

She was a graduate of Leonardo High School class of 1951.

Dorothy Mae Benson
Dorothy Mae Benson

Obituary courtesy John E. Day funeral home. 

Dorothy Mae Benson, 81, of Eatontown died peacefully at home surrounded by her loving daughters on Saturday, May 31 after courageously battling cancer for 7 years.

Born in Union Beach to Stephen Berentes Sr. and Mae Andrews Berentes, she was a former resident of Fair Haven, Oceanport and Holiday, FL before moving to Eatontown 16 years ago.

She was a graduate of Leonardo High School class of 1951. She worked as a toll collector on the Garden State Parkway for many years. She also owned and operated Toodees Pizza in Red Bank, before retiring to Fla.

In 2005, to keep busy she worked at the ARC of Monmouth Thrift Shop until her disease progressed.

Dorothy and her husband were members of the Long Branch Ice Boat and Yacht Club for many years. She loved spending time with her family playing games and working in her yard. Dorothy was a kind, giving person who was loved by all who knew her, she had a tremendous sense of humor, which helped her cope with her illness. She was a very generous, caring and fun to be around lady who lived life to its fullest, with strong principles. When life gave her lemons she made lemonade. 

She was predeceased by her brother Raymond Berentes, her parents, her son, John Stephen Donato in 1976, her second husband, Robert F. Benson in 1996 and in 2010 by her former spouse and father of her children, John Donato Jr. 

She is survived by her daughters; Cherylyn Moffatt and husband Robert of Ontario, Canada, Patricia Arentsen and husband Rodhika Wijedeera of Marlboro and AnnMarie Donato and fiancé Jeremey Ulrich of Eatontown, brother, Stephen Berentes and wife Joy of Point Pleasant, beloved grandchildren; Jessica Such, Matthew, Melissa and Amanda Arentsen and Mercedes Moffatt, and her precious dogs, Petey and Penny. 

Visitation will be held on Thursday, June 5th from 2-4 & 7-9pm at John E. Day Funeral Home, 85 Riverside Avenue, Red Bank, NJ 07701. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Dorothea’s RC Church, Eatontown on Friday, June 6th 10am. Burial will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Middletown. 

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Dorothy’s name to Monmouth County SPCA, 260 Wall Street, Eatontown, NJ 07724 or Animal Relief Foundation, 4014 Quarry Road, Manchester, NJ. 


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