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Carol Benfield

She was born in Eugene, but Carol Benfield grew up in Merritt, BC. After high school she came back to Oregon, worked for a while in Eugene and Madras, then joined the army. She met her husband Roger in Panama, where they both worked as meteorological observers on research projects. "It was a great job," she says. "But they made those positions civilian and we lost them." The pair left the army and moved to Eugene, where both took the postal service exam. "After a year-and-a-half they called us," says Benfield, who has by now walked the same route, south of the University, for 20 years. "It's a second family for me," she says."I see the kids grow up and go off to college. I definitely know the cats and dogs. I love them all." Dog lovers at home as well, she and Roger share evening outings with Deja Vue and Diablo. Benfield estimates she knows 100 dogs and an equal number of cats. "Carol is one of the strongest community builders I have met," says neighbor Camilla Mortensen. "She engages with everyone she meets. She knows everyone by name, knows every pet by name."

happening people

photograph and story by Paul Neevel

Eugene Weekly / 26 April 2007

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