Benny Hanks, a beloved member of the Emory community, passed away on September 23, 2023, at the age of 87 in Mineola, Texas. Born on April 6, 1936, in Bonita, Texas, Benny led a remarkable life defined by dedication, kindness, and an unwavering love for his family and community.
Benny embarked on a fulfilling career as a truck driver that spanned an impressive 27 years. He was an owner of Farmers Mutual before making a significant contribution to the transportation infrastructure of Emory by playing a pivotal role in the establishment of the Go Bus service. Benny's commitment to his town and its citizens was unparalleled, and he served as the first driver of the bus that connected Emory's residents with essential services and opportunities.
Though Benny did not complete his high school education, he possessed a sharp intellect that left an indelible impression on everyone he encountered. His wisdom and wit were admired by all who knew him. Benny's sense of humor was legendary and injected joy into everyday life. His family was his pride and joy, and their bond radiated with love.
Benny's dedication to serving others extended beyond his professional endeavors. He actively participated in various community organizations and passionately supported causes close to his heart. Benny was a cherished member of the Lions Club and took great pleasure in cooking for the Whispering Oaks Fire Department Cookouts. Additionally, he held a membership at the Cotton Pickin' Theatre in Point, where he delighted in experiencing live performances. As an avid enthusiast of classic cars, he also belonged to the Lake Country Classic Car Club.
Friends and family will gather to remember Benny during visitation hours at Wilson - Orwosky Funeral Home located at 803 N. Texas St., Emory, Texas on September 28, 2023, from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM. A funeral service honoring his life will follow at the same location from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM. Benny will be laid to rest at Willow Springs Cemetery, located at FM 3274 @ CR 2300, Emory, Texas. Interment will take place from 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM.
Benny Hanks leaves behind a profound legacy of love, laughter, and selflessness. His spirit of kindness and generosity will forever be cherished by those who had the privilege of knowing him. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and the entire community he so genuinely touched.
He is survived by his children, Curtis Earl Hanks, Kephen Ray Hanks, Jan Rena Heitzman; grandchildren, Maranda Jill Opry, Chelby Taylor Hanks, Brooke Rena Payne, Chet Alexander Page; great-grandchildren, Ian Opry, Vincent Opry, Willow Payne.
Benny is preceded in death by his wife, Patsy Jane Hanks; dad, Dee Granville Hanks; mom, Eula Cuba Hanks; siblings, Loraine Talley, Harvey Loyd Hanks, Edna May Brown, Myra Jo Davis, Annie Caroline, Granville Otis Hanks, and Cleveland Hanks.
We honor Benny's life and find solace in knowing that he is now watching over us, still making us smile with his unique brand of humor from beyond.