Obituary Listings

Ben Gray Christopher

June 26, 1931 September 28, 2017
Ben Gray Christopher
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Obituary for Ben Gray Christopher
Ben Gray Christopher

CHRISTOPHER, Ben Gray, 86, died Thursday, September 28, 2017, in Brandon, FL, with his family by his side. Ben was born on June 26, 1931, in Willacoochee, GA, to Bennie Estelle Henderson and William Osbourne Christopher. He grew up with older brother, Bill, and attended Douglas High School, where he played all the sports. He attended South Georgia College before heading north to Atlanta. Ben received a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Civil Engineering degree from Georgia Institute of Technology and was an avid Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket fan. He also enjoyed cheering for local teams, especially the Tampa Bay Rays. Following graduation, Ben served two years in the United States Army in Yuma, Arizona. After his tour of duty, he moved to Tampa and began working for Greiner Engineering in 1958. Soon after he married Elaine Evelyn Corbett at Hyde Park United Methodist Church on June 17, 1961. They recently celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary. His professional career spanned 36 years, all with Greiner, becoming the head of the structural engineering department. Structural projects that he worked on included the Florida interstate system highway bridges, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, the Houston Ship Channel Bridge, the Tampa International Airport, the Orlando International Airport and various projects in the US, Europe, and Asia. He was a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Florida Engineering Society. In his retirement years, Ben enjoyed serving others in his community, including leadership with Sertoma, ringing the bell for Salvation Army, serving as a volunteer tax preparer for AARP, and for over 15 years ushered at the Stratz Performing Arts Center. He enjoyed playing bridge with friends, cheering on his favorite sports teams, fishing, cruises, woodworking and spending time with his grandchildren. He was a loyal volun-told with his wife, Elaine, during her 40 years as a volunteer for Meals on Wheels. He also enjoyed attending services at the First United Methodist Church of Brandon, now New Hope, where he and Elaine have been faithful members since 1961. Ben is survived by his wife, Elaine Christopher; their two daughters and their spouses, Susan and Howard Newman, Jill and Crill Merryday; and six grandchildren: Rebecca, Nancy, and Howard Newman, Ben, his wife Maggie, Henry, and Hugh Merryday.

Funeral Information

Funeral services will be held 2:00 P.M. Monday, October 2, 2017, at New Hope United Methodist Church of Brandon, with the family receiving friends one hour prior to services. Interment will follow at New Hope Cemetery, Brandon with Military Honors.
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