Mary Ellen Benamati, 58, of Fredonia died peacefully with her family by her side at the Chautauqua County Home Sunday morning (Nov. 11, 2012) following a short illness.
Mary Ellen was born March 6, 1954 in Dunkirk, the daughter of Dolores J. Raczek of Dunkirk and the late Leo J. Raczek.
Besides her mother, she is survived by her husband of 36 years, Frank Benamati; children Mike (Tiffany) Benamati of Oak Ridge, N.C., and Lisa (Jason) Maines of Goodyear, Ariz.; grandchildren Lauren and Reed Benamati of Oak Ridge, N.C.; two brothers, Dr. Joseph (Tina) Raczek of Nashua N.H., and James (Mary Jane) Raczek of Palm Bay, FL; and several nieces and nephews.
Mary Ellen Benamati
Mary Ellen graduated from Dunkirk High School in 1972 and attended SUNY Fredonia, receiving her Bachelor's in 1975 and her Master's in Education in 1979.
She began teaching at Springville Griffith Institute from 1975 to 1980 and continued her teaching profession at Westfield Academy from 1980 until her retirement in 2011. During her 35-year tenure, she taught 7th and 12th grade math while serving as Chair of the Math Department.
She was a member of St. Anthony of Padua R.C. Church in Fredonia. Professional memberships included the Westfield Teachers Association, Association of Mathematics Teachers of New York State, New York State United Teachers and the National Education Association.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial to be held Friday, Nov. 16, 2012 at 10 AM at St. Anthony of Padua R.C. Church in Fredonia. Private internment will be at St. Joseph's Cemetery. Visitation will be at the Newman Funeral Home Inc., 201 South Zebra Street (corner of 2nd Street) in Dunkirk on Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 from 2-4 PM and 7-9 PM. Memorials in Mary Ellen's honor can be made to the Mary Ellen Benamati Memorial Scholarship fund. Please send memorials to Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation, 212 Lake Shore Drive West, Dunkirk, NY 14048.