Benjamin Duenas Cruz
January 31, 1957 – May 23, 2018
The sun shone brightly upon the face of Benjamin Duenas Cruz for the final time the morning of May 23, 2018. The beloved husband, father, brother, and grandfather passed away quietly from complications after a prolonged battle with bladder cancer. He was called to God’s holy kingdom at the age of 61.
Benjamin (Ben), originally from Agana Heights, GU, was born to Lorenzo Santos Cruz and Antonia (San Agustin) Duenas Cruz on January 31, 1957, the oldest of six children. He developed a fondness of music early on in life and was a member of the drum and bugle corps in his formative years. He met Linda Ayuyu Atalig as a young man and they were married April 8, 1980. Together they would build a family with four children and spend nearly four decades as husband and wife.
A man of conviction from a young age, he proudly served 20 years in the auxiliary division of the United States Navy, first aboard the carrier U.S.S. Midway, then aboard various Los Angeles-class submarines including the U.S.S Omaha and U.S.S Indianapolis. Following his honorable military career, Ben transitioned to Kitsap Transit, spending nearly 18 years providing services through public transportation.
A man of countless hidden talents, Ben enjoyed various homesteading activities, including making candles, jewelry and soap, as well as carpentry and woodworking. His love of music featured abrupt outbursts with “Who Let the Dogs Out” and “Born to Be Wild”, and he was known to sing and dabble with a guitar with his grandchildren when the mood struck. He played the trumpet for many years in his youth.
A boisterous and irresistibly infectious laugh accompanied his wide, straight-lined smile when he joked with others, an activity for which he was notorious. You simply weren’t initiated into his inner circle until he told you a joke.
He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Linda, sons Nathan Cruz and Benjamin Cruz, Jr., and daughters Cynara Mack and Antonia Tanner. Siblings Larry Cruz (spouse Victoria), Marion Ott (Don), Lorenzo Cruz, Jr., Rodney Cruz, Elizabeth Malo (Joseph), Alicia Cruz (Joseph), Michael Cruz (Carl Obeck), Melvin Cruz (John Alvin Tan), Josephine Guerrero (Gabriel), and Donna Taub (Jason) also remain. He leaves behind eight grandchildren who he adored – Nathan, Jr., Jayden and Leilani Cruz, Jonathan, Ryan and Danica Mack, and Jaxton and Raiden Tanner – daughter-in-law Lina Cruz, sons-in-law Joe Mack and Cliff Tanner; and scores of extended family and friends.
Ben’s remains will lay in rest at Miller-Woodlawn Funeral Home until Linda’s passing, at which time she will be buried next him and their souls will once again be unified.
A hole remains in the hearts of many with his passing.
- Viewing Thursday, May 31, 2018
- Rosary Thursday, May 31, 2018
- Funeral Mass Thursday, May 31, 2018
- Reception Thursday, May 31, 2018
Benjamin Duenas Cruz
June 17, 2018
Thank you for being an awesome older brother. I will miss you, but I know that you are in a better place now. You are at peace -- this fact brings me peace. Adios, che'lu-hu.
June 3, 2018
You have brought so many wonderful memories to all of us. I will never forget the laughter after a good joke however tacky it was. May you rest in eternal peace Uncle Ben.