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Allen Murray Benson, 68, of Alberton, died peacefully at his home on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, of natural causes. He was born July 8, 1945, in Missoula to Emily and Stanley Benson. Al grew up in Charlo, and moved to Missoula where he graduated from Missoula County High School in 1963. Right out of high school, Al became an apprentice mason and began working in the Missoula area. In December 1967, he joined the Missoula Police Department. After leaving with 12 years of service, he and his wife Cheri moved to Alberton and bought the Sportsman's Bar. Al's personality shined in his time owning and operating the Sportsman's. He was known for his endless supply of jokes and one-liners, and for making sure everyone who passed through had a good time. The Sportsman's was a gathering spot for local musicians who graciously allowed Al to join in with his singing, spoons and air guitar. The Sportsman's was also known for its fun events that Al loved to organize and sponsor, like softball games and the annual Alaskan fish fry, or even just after-hours discussions on the log bench outside the bar. Al was a tireless worker, and over the years continued to do masonry work. He was well known for his amazing and artistic masonry projects. Al helped to build many buildings, fireplaces and memorials all over the Missoula area, which will long be remembered as his legacy. Al, aka "Big Al," "Al B." and "Rockin' Al" was kind, and well-known for his generosity. He would go out of his way to help a friend or a stranger, and he always had a song to sing or a story to tell. He had a vast amount of friends and he will be missed by many. Al was preceded in death by his parents, Stanley and Emily Benson; and his brother, Phillip Benson. Survivors include his wife, Cheri of Alberton; his daughters and their families, Tanya (Monte) Mindt, Tami Benson, Tara (Justin) Whitmore, all of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, Kim (Von) Dailey of Florence and Jeff (Stefany) Northcutt of Redmond, Wash.; his sister, Thelma (Floyd) Olson of Missoula; nieces and nephews, Phillip (Tracie) Olson of Missoula, Lisa (Dave) Slama of Polson, Bendi (Jean-Pierre) Schrambach of Hayden, Idaho, Cale Benson of Missoula, Andy Benson and Adam Benson of Tacoma, Wash.; along with 11 grandchildren. It was Al's wish not to have a funeral service, but rather to celebrate his life with remembrance of the fun times and stories we've all had with him over the years

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