Deanna Lynn Bender of Kent, WA passed away on Monday, December 14, 2020 from complications of pneumonia. Deanna was born in Billings, MT on June 7, 1966 to Richard L. and Lilly (Wittman) Bender. Her dad picked the name based on one of his favorite actresses at the time, Deanna Durbin.
She attended Grand Ave Elementary, Lewis & Clark Junior High and Billings Senior High School.
On October 15, 1983 she married Eugene “Paul” Castro. They had two children Eugene Paul “JR” and Adam Jerome. Paul and Deanna divorced in 1992 and Deanna later relocated to Issaquah, WA with her children.
While in Billings, Deanna was a bookkeeper for Don’s Car Wash. Once she got to Washington and her kids were in school, she took her love of medical shows (both fiction and non-fiction) along with her nurturing nature and pursued a degree as a Certified Medical Assistant from Lake Washington University in Bellevue, WA where she was on the Dean’s list. She worked in dermatology and in breast health. She was consistently commended for her compassionate care of patients and the kindness she showed her co-workers. Deanna’s combination of fibromyalgia and Crohn’s disease cut her career as a CMA short and although she lived with chronic pain, she was always concerned about even the smallest of ailments in other people.
The loves of Deanna’s life were her sons and pretty much all fuzzy creatures. Any gift she gave to a family member came signed by her and no less than 4 cats and 2 dogs. She also enjoyed spending time in the yard. She was a believer in organic products that wouldn’t harm insects. She enjoyed seeing them do nature’s work while she kept the grass and plants green and healthy. She talked often about being able to take a nice long camping and fishing trip with her boys. She also loved just relaxing on a beach (Kauai was a favorite).
Deanna was also a great cook. She could take whatever was in the fridge and make what she called “slop” with it. Despite the name, it was always tasty. She could also make great Mexican and German dishes. She made a traditional German fruit soup each January for her parents’ birthdays.
She also loved music. She could quickly identify the name and artist of many 70s and 80s hits. Her favorite song of the last few years was “Counting Stars” by OneRepublic. We like to think she’s out there in the stars with her beloved father who passed 9 months before she did.
Deanna is survived by her sons Eugene “JR” Castro (Christy Ramsey) of Kent, WA and Adam Castro of Seattle, WA, grandkids Ayanna and Antonio Hughes, mother Lilly Bender of Seattle, WA, sister Lisa Bender of Seattle, WA, half-sister Jennifer Jorgenson (Dale) of Renton, WA and half-brothers Russell Bender of Stanley, ND and Gregory Bender (Carolyn) of Billings, MT. She is also survived by 3 uncles: David Wittman of Billings, MT, Robert Bender (Patty) of Gold Creek, MT and Gerald Bender (Edie) of Apple Valley, CA, 3 aunts: Elsie Albee of Glendale, AZ, Shirley Culbertson (John) of Shepherd, MT and Doris Newlin (Newell) of Los Lunas, NM, a niece and 2 nephews Jason Jorgenson, Cody Bender, Briann Bender and over thirty cousins.
She was preceded in death by her father Richard L. Bender, grandparents Amy and Dave Wittman of Huntley, MT and Emanuel and Laura Bender formerly of Billings, MT, Harlowton, MT and El Cajon, CA.
Cremation has taken place. We hope to plan a service in late 2021.
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