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Michael R. Benbow, Inglewood Resident, Passes Away
By Cora Jackson-Fossett, Managing Editor
Published November 24, 2022

Michael R. Benbow (Courtesy photo)

Michael Ralph Benbow, a longtime resident and civic leader of Inglewood, passed away recently. He was 73-years-old.

Long admired for his political activism and spiritual dedication, Michael inspired others in his professional career, as a member of First AME Church of Los Angeles and by serving on commissions in the administrations of Inglewood Mayors Roosevelt Dorn and James Butts.

A celebration of Michael’s life will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 29, at 11:30 a.m., at Inglewood Park Cemetery Mortuary, 3801 W. Manchester Blvd., in Inglewood.


Michael was born on May 12, 1949 to Richard L. and Geraldine Benbow in St. Louis, Missouri. A charismatic and energetic child, he was popular with classmates at Benton Elementary and Beaumont High School. Also, Michael displayed a strong interest in politics and the civil rights movement in the 1960s. According to his siblings, he established a reputation as a community champion and advocate.

After high school, Michael attended Grambling State University where he pledged with Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity. He also earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Master’s degree in Sports Administration. Michael worked on the staff and was mentored by legendary GSU football coach Eddie Robinson and traveled with GSU’s teams to famous venues such as Yankee Stadium in New York City and the Super Dome in New Orleans.

Michael’s charming personality led to a successful career in sales and marketing for major corporations including Hershey’s and the Yellow Pages. He also used his talents as a broadcaster on one of St. Louis’ most popular radio stations.  In 1986, he relocated to Southern California and continued his career in marketing and sales with the Inglewood Forum, Herbalife, and Kedren Head Start.

In addition to being an active member of the New Frontier Democratic Club, Michael and his late wife, Lillian, were renowned for hosting summer backyard barbeque parties. The wall along their backyard was a replica of Busch Stadium, home of Michael’s favorite baseball team, the St. Louis Cardinals.

Mike was also a kidney transplant survivor who continued his active life until his passing.

Cherishing his memory are his daughter, Kendra Niota and son-in-law Mark Prevost; son, Michael Jr.; grandchildren, Saadia Rhian and Raia Bree Prevost; brothers, Richard L. Benbow, Jr. (Lorna) and Leslie Williams (Tracy); aunt, Donita Williams (Larry); and many other relatives and friends.

Categories: Celebration of Life | News
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