Benoit

Karen Benoit Owatonna—Karen V. (Rhedin) Benoit, 73, of Owatonna, died Tuesday, August 13, 2019, with her family by her side. Karen was born December 29, 1945, in St. Paul the beloved daughter of Howard and Marguerite (Pearson) Rhedin. She graduated from Central High School and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Macalester College in 1967. During her time at Macalester she also met the love of her life Graham Benoit, and the two were later married on August 17, 1968. Karen was a teacher in St. Paul, Cedar Rapids, and Owatonna schools and worked briefly at OMC and OTC before joining the team at Federated Insurance. She took great pride in her work and over a 32-year long career earned her Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter certification and a reputation as a wellspring of knowledge and support for her colleagues throughout the company. Karen was a true Swede to her very core always humble, giving, and eager to gather those she loved around a table of food. The warmth of her home was second only to the warmth of her heart, and she spent her entire life loving and nourishing the people around her. She enjoyed a good mystery, a cup of instant coffee, time traveling through genealogy, and taking a trip to IKEA, but there is nothing that brought her more joy than her family. She created her own beautiful world with her partner Graham and basked in it with him for over half a century. She was a ferociously loving mother to her favorite son Donald and her favorite daughter Christine, always cheering them on and lifting them up. And to her granddaughter and grandsons, Payton, Arthur, Wallace, and Eugene, she was perhaps her favorite version of herself: Grandma. From sleepover adventures with Eugene and Wallace to cross-country adventures with Payton and Arthur, she spent the last 16 years with a beaming smile on her face and a sparkle in her eyes, completely in awe and in love. Karen is survived by her husband Graham; her children Donald (Josie) Benoit and Christine (James Dickinson) Benoit; and her grandchildren Payton, Arthur, Wallace, and Eugene. She is also survived by her brother David (Mary) Rhedin; her sister-in-law Patti Benoit; her six nieces and nephews; and her cousins and their beautiful families. The Benoit Family will hold a private service to celebrate Karen's life at a later date, but encourages all who are interested in sharing a warm thought or memory with the Family to reach out via Karen's old email address: oldgrayonetoo@gmail.com. We will forever treasure every moment we had with her, and we are so grateful for the stories of her that we've heard from friends and family since her passing. Thank you for your love and support. Memorials are preferred to the Owatonna Public Library Foundation or the donor's choice.

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