Benjamin “Ben” Lee Croft, well known horseman, union painter and life-long resident of Evening Shade, Mo., unexpectedly went to be with the lord on March 12, 2022, at the age of 54, in Waynesville, Mo. He was in his element, among good friends and horses.
Ben is survived by his wife, Amy Renee (Jenkins); one son, Benjamin William Croft; two daughters, Monica Jo Brock (Tyler) and Mickey Maria Croft (Patric McCown); mother, Wanola Vearl Croft; sisters, Linda Jean Miller (Don) of Carbondale, Ill., Karen Sue Rasgaitis (Ted) of Waynesville, Deloris Renee Minkus (Andy) of Lebanon, Ella Mayo Fix (Joe) of Dover, Wisc.; and nine grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his father, Henry Truman Croft; paternal grandparents, Ward and Alma Croft; maternal grandparents, John Taft and Iona Lavina Cornelius.
Ben was born in Houston, Mo., on November 4, 1967. Growing up he learned alongside his dad, Henry, and many others in the horse industry, how to train, show, shoe and trail ride any horse or mule he put his saddle on. He asked Jesus into his heart and was baptized on April 22, 1984. After attending high school in Plato, Mo., he joined the Painters Local Union 1265, learning the trade as a painter and drywaller. In 1988 he married Amy, the love of his life. As a farrier and painter he practiced his trades in and around his hometown as well as many building projects on Fort Leonard Wood. Chances are, if you knew him, his work is in your home and if you have a horse you have been on a trail ride with him. Family was his passion, especially being a Papa. Through the years he enjoyed hunting, especially for wild hogs. In addition, he spent time gigging on the river for a fish fry, trout fishing at Montauk, and he would always help others out when he could. Ben loved classic rock, country music, and dancing (especially a jig.) He enjoyed social media because it provided him an outlet and a way to visit with family and friends. He loved TikTok and even made some of his own videos.
He will be forever missed by his entire family, community, and anyone whoever knew him as a friend.
A funeral service for Ben was held Thursday, March 17, 2022, at 2 p.m. at Roby Baptist Church. A visitation began one hour prior to service time at 1 p.m. Burial followed in Long Hollow Cemetery. Memorial contributions to assist with funeral expenses may be made out to the Fox Funeral Home and dropped off at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left at www.foxfh.net. Arrangements entrusted to Fox Funeral Home 128 S. Main St., Licking, Mo.