Cover photo for Peter  Hayden  Bennett's Obituary
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1930 Peter 2021

Peter Hayden Bennett

May 16, 1930 — March 28, 2021

Peter Hayden Bennett, age 90, died Sunday, March 28, 2021 at his home in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Known as “Pete” to his friends, but “Hayden” or “Cork” to family, he was born May 16, 1930 in Toledo, OH to the late Emmalyn O. and Byron B. Bennett.

A 1948 graduate of Ottawa Hills High School in Toledo, where he served as senior class president, Pete attended the University of Michigan for a year before transferring to the University of Toledo to be closer to his high school girlfriend, Sally (DeVilbiss H.S, class of 1948). After graduating with a degree in Electrical Engineering in 1952, he and Sally were married on August 16, 1952 in Toledo. He then began service with the U.S. Army Signal Corp, eventually attaining the rank of Lieutenant. The Bennetts’ first child was born in 1953, shortly before Pete was sent to Korea for a year.

After his return to family and civilian life more than a year later, Pete began his career in telecommunications in 1955 at The North Electric Company in Galion, OH. In 1963, he joined the International Telephone & Telegraph Company (ITT), and the family, which by then included a second daughter born in 1956, moved to San Juan, Puerto Rico. In 1969, Pete was transferred to ITT headquarters in New York, and the family, now with a third daughter born in Puerto Rico in 1967, moved to Short Hills, NJ. Pete’s telecom career later included positions with RCA in Camden, NJ and the Telecommunications Industry Association in Washington, DC, with corresponding moves to Cherry Hill, NJ and Columbia MD.

After Pete’s retirement in 1995, the Bennetts moved to Carlisle, PA, nearer their oldest daughter and only grandchild. They enjoyed an active retirement, traveling widely. Pete also served the Carlisle community for nearly 20 years as a volunteer in the Carlisle Regional Medical Center emergency department, where he proudly donned scrubs and reported for “work” each week, relishing any task asked of him. He was especially noted for his ability to calm worried families, fix broken equipment, produce helpful training videos, and manage the hospital’s annual “Photos with Santa” program.

Pete also made many friends at his weekly Carlisle YMCA water exercise class, where he typically spent more time socializing, flirting, and entertaining the class than exercising. Ultimately, however, many became familiar with Pete thanks to the hundreds of social media posts that featured him with his beloved canine best friend, Waldo, who picked Pete out at Molly’s Place pet rescue in 2014. The two were peas in a pod from that point on, with Waldo easing Pete’s final days by always staying nearby. Pete and Sally had together enjoyed lavishing love on a series of canine companions over the years as well, beginning with Schön and Taffy in Puerto Rico, and continuing with Seabiscuit, Elspeth, Grover, Abby, and Zeke.

For the nearly nine years since Sally’s death, Pete was lovingly cared for in his own home by his daughter Carrie Bennett. The Bennett family would also like to thank the amazing care team at SpiriTrust Lutheran Hospice, whose guidance and loving care helped make it possible for Pete to remain in the comfort of his own home. Additionally, Candida Della Ragione and Wendy Carl provided countless hours of assistance to Carrie, so that she could continue to care for her father in the manner that this amazing man deserved.

In addition to his parents, Pete was predeceased by his brother Joseph Ford “Skip” Bennett II, in 1956, and his wife of nearly 60 years, Sally Carter Bennett, in 2012. Survivors include his daughters Caroline Bennett, with whom he lived in Carlisle; Barbara Bennett (Christopher) Houston, also of Carlisle; Kimberly Bennett (Richard Urda), of Trumansburg, NY; grand-daughter Alexandra Houston, of Chicago, IL; and of course Waldo, the beloved dog who provided so many years of unconditional love, warmth, and gentle kisses.

The family is grateful to the staff at Hoffman Funeral Home and Crematory in Carlisle, who handled all arrangements. There will be no services, and Pete’s cremains will be interred with Sally’s in the Bennett family plot at Historic Woodlawn Cemetery in Toledo. Friends wishing to memorialize Pete’s life are invited to contribute to the Carlisle Area Dog Parks Association, Box 1016, Carlisle, PA 17013. Friends and family are also invited to view the full obituary and to share reminiscences and stories at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Peter Hayden Bennett, please visit our flower store.


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