Wilbert Roy “Papaw” Benes, Sr.


Wilbert Roy “Papaw” Benes, Sr., of Gonzales, passed away Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020 at the age of 91. Wilbert was born on Feb. 24, 1929 to Hattie Zavadil and Joseph Benes in Gonzales. He married Mary Cantu on Dec. 15, 1956 in Weslaco. He was a member of the VFW – Post 4817 and the American Legion – Post 40.

Wilbert was a character; he had a special wit about him that you could not help but love. He enjoyed being surrounded by his family, up until it was time to go to bed. He spent his time hunting, camping, and simply tinkering around, looking for something to get into. On his down time, he would be found in front of the television, watching an old western movie with his sidekick, Tigger.

Wilbert is survived by his wife of almost 64 years, Mary Benes of Gonzales; daughters: Sandra Benes (Ricky Baca) of Gonzales, and Hattie Krueger of Gonzales; son: Wilbert Benes, Jr. (wife Lori) of Gonzales; brother-in-law,: Leo Cantu, Jr. (wife Dana) of Parker, Colorado; sister-in-law: Deanna Cantu of Springfield, Virginia; grandchildren: Kristy May (Eric Radford), Krystal Pullin (husband James), Kena May (Isaac Anzaldua), Kendra May (Joe Riojas), Devin Benes (wife Alexis), Ryan Benes (Karyli de la Garza), Ashley Wheelis (Blain Hill), Derrick Klapuch (Gabriela Rodriguez); 16 great-grandchildren; niece: Carol Jane Cusick; nephew: Robert Jurica, Jr.; two great-nieces; and two great-nephews. He is also survived by the “second love of his life,” his cat, Tigger. He is preceded in death by his parents; sister: Viola Benes Jurica (husband Robert Jurica); and brother-in-law,: Mario Cantu.

A visitation will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020 from 5 until 7 p.m. in Seydler-Hill Funeral Home. A rosary will follow at 7 p.m. with Deacon John Klapuch.

Honorary pallbearers include his grandson: Derrick Klapuch, Devin Benes, and Ryan Benes.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the: Alzheimer’s Foundation or the American Heart Association.

Friends may sign the guestbook and leave their condolences to the family by visiting

Due to current CDC, state, & local mandates, protective measures regarding social distancing, limited attendance capacity, and use of personal protective masks will be required for the visitation and rosary. Services are under the care and direction of Seydler-Hill Funeral Home.