Ella Jones Bengel

September 21, 1926December 25, 2012
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Ella Jones Bengel, 86, a dedicated woman of God, went peacefully to be with her Lord and Savior on Christmas Day, December 25th, 2012. Born September 21, 1926, in Trenton, North Carolina, Ella was the daughter of the late Durham Elmo Jones and Winnie Hinson Jones. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband R.E. "Buddy" Bengel Jr., son Richard E. Bengel III, five sisters and two brothers.

Surviving are her four children: Steve Bengel and wife Sabrina, Linda B. White and husband Ray, Patricia B. Boyd, Sandra B. Sibley and husband Kenny; eleven grandchildren and six great grandchildren.

Ella Bengel's life was a life dedicated to serving her Lord and Savior and to others in her community. She never missed an opportunity to share the gospel of our Lord with those she would meet, and was described by others as an "unashamed witness." She dedicated her life to Christ at an early age and faithfully attended church all her life. She did God's work as a Sunday School teacher for 40 years and, after a trip to the Holy Land, started doing a slide show for many of the churches in the New Bern area, again spreading the good news of her Lord.

Her love of this community and its youth led her to run for Alderman of the 5th Ward in 1973 where she served four terms marked by exemplary and energetic leadership in the vital accomplishments of the Board. In 1985 she was elected as New Bern's first Woman Mayor, serving two terms and was a powerful influence for good in the growth and progress of this community and was one of New Bern's prominent and influential residents. She earned the respect of all whom she came into contact, and the love and affection of a host of friends.

Ella received many awards during her life. She was most proud of receiving the Woman of the Year Award in 1976, The All American City Award while she served as Mayor, and finally the Order of the Long Leaf Pine Award presented to her in 2010 by Governor Beverly Perdue during New Bern's 300th Celebration.

Ella has finally received the ultimate gift of seeing God and being reunited with her loved ones. She lived a life full of grace.

Funeral services will be held Friday, December 28, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. at Tabernacle Baptist Church. Interment will be at New Bern Memorial Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Thursday, December 27, 2012 at Cotten Funeral Home from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the New Bern Firemen’s Museum, 408 Hancock Street, New Bern, NC 28560.


  • Visitation Thursday, December 27, 2012
  • Funeral Service Friday, December 28, 2012

Ella Jones Bengel

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January 25, 2013

Linda, Your Mother was a wonderful person. One of the last things I said to her was if I don't see you again I will know where you are. Our Prayers are with you and your family. I know she will be greatly missed.

With our Prayers Wayne & Lorraine Autry Smith

Patricia Pye

January 21, 2013

I'm so sorry to here of your loss. May God be with a this sad time.


January 5, 2013


Virgil and Deidre Edwards

January 3, 2013

Well, there was a glorious reunion on Christmas Day: Ella, Buddy, Ed, and Josie! We smile just thinking of the rejoicing! Remembering that joy and knowing that all are together with Christ has to temper our sense of immediate loss. She was a special lady in every way. Our prayers for the family as you mourn for your loss.

Reasylvia Foley

December 30, 2012

Ella Bengel's legacy will last for a long time. I honored and admired her. She was a true lady. She is happy now with God.

N. O.

December 30, 2012

My deepest condolences. Remember the words found in Psalm 94:18- “When my disquieting thoughts became many inside of me, Your own consolations began to fondle my soul.” .....yes, prayer will help you cope, as will drawing closer to God (James 4:8). I so sorry for your loss.

Bill & MaryLou Hartman

December 30, 2012

Mayor Ella Bengel will always hold a very tender place in our hearts. She "was New Bern" to us!!!! Gracious kindness with a brilliant smile that warmed every possible trouble spot. Her light for Christ shone clearly for all to see. We praise Him for her life and that it touched ours along with multiple others. We are bathing each of her family in prayer through these difficult days.

Steve Cogdell

December 29, 2012

My thoughts and prayers are with the Bengal family.

December 29, 2012

To the family, We at Croaton Village enjoy the short time we had with Mrs. Bengel. Her smile and kindness will be missed. Thank you for shareing her... Lisa Gibson

Pat Drake

December 28, 2012

Steve, Sabrina - our thoughts & prayers go out to you & your family. Your Mom was such a positive force in our community. Her memory wil be held in the hearts of many.

Pat Drake & Mack Paul