Gregory William Bendlin

Gregory William Bendlin

May 10, 1948 – October 11, 2019

Gregory William Bendlin was born on May 10, 1948 to Virgil and Jeanne (Giep) Bendlin.  He grew up in Sutherland, IA, the second of three children.  Growing up on a farm, Greg was accustomed to hard work, and it was here that he developed his drive to give 100 percent to every challenge that he encountered.  In 1966, he graduated from Sutherland Consolidated High School and went on to defend our country in the US Navy during the Vietnam War.  Following his return to the states, he subbed and taught middle school English at various schools including Nathan Hale.  After 7 years in education, he transitioned into a successful career in sales.  On June 25, 1982, Greg married the love of his life, Rena O’Neil, at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Omaha, and they went on to have three wonderful children.

Known for his sarcastic wit and kind heart, Greg worked hard to give back to his community and those who were less fortunate, whether it be by shoveling a neighbor’s driveway or taking the time to listen to a friend in need.  In addition, Greg was an active member of the Rotary Club of Omaha.  No matter what task Greg undertook, he gave it his all and made sure to crack jokes along the way.

In addition to Greg’s tenacious work-ethic and endless sense of humor, he had a love for life that was truly contagious.  While his children were growing up, Greg served as both a coach and their biggest fan, known for the numerous home videos that he recorded.  As his family grew, and grandchildren were added to the mix, Greg was known for bouncing them on his knee and singing to them.  In fact, the grandkids frequently “got the band back together” with Grandpa as they accompanied him on numerous musical instruments while Greg sang along to the musical stylings of the Traveling Wilburys and Del Shannon.  Additionally, Greg shared his love for the outdoors with his children and grandchildren.  From weekend hunting trips, to family camp outs, to relaxing on the back patio in front of a fire, Greg was most at peace in nature.  No matter what he was doing, from his love of music, to his outdoor adventures, to his undying devotion to his family, Greg truly lived life to the fullest.

Greg is survived by his wife of 37 years, Rena;his children: Andrew (Kayli) Bendlin, Emily (Alexander Parker) Bendlin, Patrick (Shea) Bendlin; five grandchildren (Jefferson, Lena, Hudson, Madeline, Graham) and a new addition due in February 2020.  Greg also leaves behind his sisters: Naomi Sue Dodge (Jim) of North Bend, NE and Sally Jo Jean Bailey (Russ) of Tulsa, OK and numerous nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents, Virgil and Jeanne.

Visitation begins on Thursday, October 17th at 5:30pm at the West Center Chapel with CELEBRATION OF LIFE SERVICE at 6:30pm.
Private Interment: Omaha National Cemetery with military honors by US Navy Honor Guard with Benson VFW Post 2503.  Memorials are suggested to Discalced Carmelite Nuns of Sioux City, Iowa.


  • Marilyn Cady Posted October 14, 2019 1:02 pm

    Greg, you will be missed by so many. Thank you for your wisdom and humor over the years. To his family, thank you for sharing him with us. My heart hurts for you all.

  • Jackie Ady Posted October 14, 2019 1:04 pm

    Rena and family – I am so very sorry for you loss. Prayers sent your way for strength to help you get through this difficult time.

  • Watona King Posted October 14, 2019 1:20 pm

    I hope the Bendlin family can find some comfort in knowing that Greg was greatly loved and respected by so many. I could write a book on Greg and all he has done for others. Please, know that you are not alone. May God give you the comfort and strength you need at this sad time.

  • Cindy Hall Posted October 14, 2019 2:13 pm

    Rena and family, Greg was a special person and wonderful father and grandfather. My heart aches for you all and I wish I could be there at this time. Hold each other close and know that his spirit will always be with you.

  • Jeff Allen Posted October 15, 2019 5:56 am

    RIP my friend. You will be missed by many. My prayers to all.

  • James Roberts(ChooChoo Jim) Posted October 15, 2019 6:17 am

    Greg’s quick wit and his infectious laugh will be missed. Not sure how many lives he may have saved with his wisdom, love, & tolerance for people with our disease.

  • Sandy McGranaghan Posted October 15, 2019 10:30 am

    Rena and family, I am so sorry to hear about Greg. I will say an extra prayer for all of you.Rena, take care of yourself as you take care of everyone else in this difficult time. I wish you peace, Sandy

  • Jeremy and Emily Gieseke Posted October 15, 2019 7:30 pm

    Andy, Kayli, and all your family. We are so sorry for your loss. Thinking about you all.

  • Kim Bowen Brummer Posted January 11, 2023 1:38 am

    I’m so sorry to learn he has moved on. I was looking up Mr. Bendlin to tell him what an impact he had on my love of English class. It remained my favorite subject always. It’s been something like 47 or 48 years and I never forgot him.

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