The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK


December 5, 2012

Jane (West) Benich

Published 12-5-12

ENID, Okla. — Service for Mrs. Jane (West) Benich will be 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012, at Brown-Cummings Funeral Home Chapel. Gary Leonard will officiate. Burial in Memorial Park Cemetery. Service is under the direction of Brown-Cummings Funeral Home.

Jane was born March 21, 1925, the sixth of seven children of G. Roland and May West. Jane was born in Weatherford, Okla., one of several locations where her father was the pastor of a Baptist church.

Jane passed away Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012, in Austin, Texas, at the age of 87.

When she was 10 years old, Jane moved with her family to Enid in 1935. Her father had become pastor of Olivet Baptist Church in Enid. She attended Oklahoma A&M College (now Oklahoma State University) at Stillwater. She excelled in her college work, graduating with honors.

Jane loved pretty clothes, especially in light pinks and light blues. Mom West loved to help her put together new outfits and enjoyed her visits and times she came home to recoup, rest and launch out again.

Jane’s high-energy personality and her flair for fashion shaped her life, both personally and professionally. She worked in TV in Enid, helping to find and promote local talent, and performed as the station weather broadcaster for a period of time in the 1950’s.

Jane found employment in London, England, as program director for the USO, the entertainment and support adjunct organization to the U.S. military. It was in this capacity that she met an Air Force intelligence officer who became her husband.

In 1958, Jane married Capt. Keith Benich.  Jane and Keith took advantage of the English antiques market, compiling a small collection of finer items. Her marriage to Keith ended without children after 18 years in 1977.

Later in life Jane fought health battles against cancer, lung problems and heart ailments. But through it all, she maintained her independent spirit and positive attitude.

Jane was preceded in death by her parents, Roland and May West; her sister, Grace Hayes; and three brothers, Paul West, Clovis West and Stan West.

She is survived by two brothers, Ed West of Oregon and Cooper West of Elk City.

She was dearly loved by all her nieces and nephews, Ann (Hayes) Shaff, Judy (Hayes) Hoisington, Janice (West) Leonard, Gail (West) Moore, Nancy (West) Menees, Frank West, Vick Hayes, Jim Hayes, Karl West, Gerald West, Neil West, John West, Gail West, Mark West, Tom West and Ted West.

Condolences may be made to the family online at

(Submitted by family)


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