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Benjamin S. Wood Jr. '54

Ben was born to Annette Wright Wood and Benjamin Smith Wood, Sr. in Boston MA on March 30th, 1932. He was an active listener and learner in school and in interactions with people due to his lifetime severe hearing loss, coupled with his curiosity and intelligence. Ben graduated from Antioch College in 1954 and University of Pennsylvania Medical School in 1958. He married June Greene at Pendle Hill in Wallingford PA. After a year of rotating internship at Lankenau Hospital in suburban Philadelphia, the Wood family moved to Denver, CO, where Ben completed a psychiatric residency at the University of Colorado, plus two years of Public Health Service at a youth prison in Englewood, CO. He began his private practice of psychiatry and part-time psychiatric work at the VA Hospital in Denver and continued both until he retired in 1994. Ben and June's beloved progeny are, by family; Ann Mullen, spouse, Peter; and grandchildren, Conor and Derek Mullen, Jennifer Wood, spouse, Vernon Berry; and grandchildren Katharine and Benjamin Berry Gregory Wood and spouse, Elizabeth Wood, Robyn Wood, spouse Paul Brigham; and grandchildren Eli and Isabella Brighham. Ben enjoyed all of his children and grandchildren tremendously and played with them in his unique active and creative way. All shared his love of mountain activities and “WILD FUN.” Ben's love of adventure was expressed in many activities, such as climbing all of Colorado's “fourteeners” in the 1970s; crewing in a sailing race across the Atlantic in the path of Columbus in 1992, and another sailing trip several years later from west to east. He trekked with friends in Nepal in 1988. He sailed around most of Newfoundland in 2000. Ben and friends organized yearly cross-country ski trips from Tenth Mountain Huts in the Rockies, which Greg was old enough to join, in time. Ben and a friend explored Cuba with bikes and supposed reporter credentials in the late 1990s. Together, Ben and June enjoyed many memorable trips abroad. Hiking the Cinque Terre in northern Italy and visiting the nearby site of June's old Quaker work camp; exploring England, Scotland, and Ireland; visiting June's living relatives in Norway and Sweden, and a trip to Turkey were among wonderful trips too numerous to mention. Most of all, though, Ben and June enjoyed long talks together, especially after they both retired. June has always claimed, sincerely, that Ben is the most interesting man she ever met. Ben's entire family joins June in challenging all to cherish their lives and relationships and be mindful of the joys of being alive each and every day.