Fort Smith High School
John Bennett

After graduation I attended college, met and married Lynda Brooks, another ’58 classmate. Lynda and I have been blessed with 2 wonderful daughters, a great son-in-law and a wonderful grandson.

I retired in January 2000 from the Caterpillar Tractor dealer for Arkansas. We operated 10 stores with about 600 employees, headquartered in Little Rock. I was an officer and Vice President since 1985. It's every boys dream to be around large earthmoving equipment. For 40 years I lived this dream and enjoyed a career with a company that was challenging and rewarding.

I have been a Rotarian since 1979, a charter member of our Rotary Club, served as an officer of Rotary International and served as Governor of Rotary International for the District in central and northeast Arkansas.

My passion and one of the most rewarding experiences for me was to organize a fundraiser to support Camp Aldersgate in Little Rock about 20 years ago. This is an annual fund raiser that has to date raised over $450,000. Camp Aldersgate is located on a 120-acre site in Little Rock and provides Med Camps and a traditional camping experience for children with disabilities. This is now supported by all of the Pulaski County Rotary Clubs. My family has been very supportive of my volunteer and charity efforts.

My hobbies include horses, boating, camping and traveling in our motor home. We belong to the Roadhogs. This is an organization of The Razorback Foundation. We have an RV site in the Roadhog Park at Fayetteville and make most of the out of town games as well.

Another of my hobbies is restoring and showing our four antique automobiles, including a ’57 Ford convertible, like we had when we were dating. We belong to the Arkansas Travelers Antique Auto Club and make several trips a year in our old cars. We drove our ’57 Ford convertible to “Cruising the Coast” in Mississippi last year and there were over 5000 cars that also made the trip.

We live just outside of Little Rock in Benton on a private lake.

Our current plans are to travel to Mexico for our 43rd wedding anniversary and Scotland next year.

I tell all of our friends that I highly recommend this retirement, don’t wear a watch any more, everyday is Saturday.

John Bennett - 2003