Bennett “Ben” Craig Cunard

A memorial service will be held on November 30th, 2023, at 1:00 PM at Butler Funeral Home in Bolivar, Missouri. With a graveside service being held at 9:00 AM Friday, December 1, 2023 at the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Springfield, MO. An additional memorial service near the Cunard family home in Missouri Valley, Iowa is set for December 9th, 2023, at 11:00 AM at Hennessy Funeral Home. All are welcome to attend either or both services. Memorial Contributions may be made to the Honor Flight.

Bennett (Ben) Craig Cunard, 74, of Ozark, MO went home to be with the Lord on November 23rd, 2023, at 12:34 am. He was born to Bennett & Nadine Cunard on March 2nd, 1949, at his family home in Missouri Valley, IA. Ben was a devoted son and loving brother who cherished his family. He was an honor roll student all through school and was known for being a “fixer”. Throughout his life, he demonstrated a remarkable capacity to repair anything with an engine. He graduated from Missouri Valley High School in 1967 and went on to attend a year at Iowa State University for mechanical engineering. In 1968, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and proudly served during the Vietnam War as an airplane technician on the U.S.S. Coral Sea, returning to the U.S. in 1972. He was married to Sylvia Sprenger for 29 years and to this union was born Ben, Brad & Cara. Ben worked as a mechanic in Nebraska before he and the family moved to Ozark, MO in 1991. In 2002, he met JoAnn Zimmerman. They spent 21 years together going on lots of long walks, traveling and enjoying time with friends and family, especially the grandkids.

Survivors include his companion, JoAnn; the mother of his children, Sylvia; son, Ben & Jodi Cunard of Blair, NE, son, Brad & Tricia Cunard of Olathe, KS; daughter, Cara & Bob Henderson of Spring Hill, KS; JoAnn’s daughters, Trisha Martin of Bolivar, MO, Jodi & Robb James of Heath, TX; and eight grandchildren, Madi, Avery, Aiden, Cameron, Eva, Cole, Carly & Wade; also survived by five siblings, Claudia Cunard of Missouri Valley, IA, Kath & Tim Mickey of Logan, IA, Pat Fair of Spring Hill, KS, Dan Cunard of Spring Hill, KS, and Mark Cunard & companion, Glenda Oliver, of Logan, IA, multiple cousins, nieces, nephews and many beloved friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Bennett & Nadine Cunard, and brother-in-law, Paul Fair.



  • Rick and Kathy Cooper Posted December 1, 2023 9:50 am

    We are so very sorry to hear of Ben’s death. We are former classmates of Ben — class of 1967 and attended Iowa State together in 1967-1968. Rick rode back and forth to college in his 1947 Mercury. Ben liked to say “It was the first Mercury Cougar ever made”. Ben was a very kind and humble man and a wonderful friend to many. Our sincere condolences to the family.

  • Leia Johnsen Posted December 2, 2023 10:03 am

    Our sincere condolences to Ben’s family and friends. What a kind handsome guy. Went from kindergarten to 12th with him and never knew he ever got in trouble. A true friend for sure. Prayers and love
    John and Leia (Torgerson) Johnsen

  • Sheila Fox-Soliday Posted December 2, 2023 2:35 pm

    I am also one of the ones that went from kindergarten through 12th grade. He was never in trouble and a quiet boy in grade school. I am so sorry for the families loss.

  • Barbara Rothenay Posted December 2, 2023 8:39 pm

    Bennie was the quintessentiaI nice guy. But I do remember the time when Miss Pappas (teacher) flung a chalkboard eraser to the back of the room in the vicinity of where Bennie was sitting. Very calmly and quietly, Bennie picked it up and threw it back at her!! Applause!!! Guess ‘ya gotta watch those quiet ones!! God bless.

  • ann Green Posted December 23, 2023 7:16 pm

    Sorry to hear about Ben He was in my brothers class 1967 (Gary Ehlert ) sounds like he was a busy guy. My sympathy to the family . Take care ! Ann (Ehlert) Green .

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