Dr. Benjamin Foote

  • Born: October 25, 1928
  • Died: July 6, 2014
  • Location: Kent, Ohio

Bissler & Sons Funeral Home and Crematory

628 West Main Street
Kent, OH 44240

Tel. (330) 673-5857

Tribute & Message From The Family

Dr. Benjamin A. Foote

Dr. Benjamin A. Foote, 85, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by his loving family on Sunday, July 6th. He was born in Delaware, Ohio on October 25, 1928 to Grant and Nettie (nee Archer) Foote. Three brothers and a sister preceded him in death.

Dr. Foote completed his B.A. in Zoology at Ohio Wesleyan (Alpha Tau Omega) in 1950 and his Masters in Entomology at Ohio State University in 1952. Following 2 years of service in Germany with the Army during the Korean War, he was honorably discharged with the rank of Corporal. In 1961, he completed his PhD in Entomology at Cornell University. As a highly respected expert in entomology, he was a professor of Biology at Kent State University for 35 years where he mentored more than 50 graduate students, many of whom cite him as the inspiration for their own success as teachers and researchers. In addition, Dr. Foote taught for many summers at the University of Montana's Biological Research Station on Flathead Lake. For 10 summers, he instilled his love of the west and a respect for the environment in hundreds of KSU students via class trips to the western United States and Mexico. His academic achievements were recognized with numerous awards including Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi, and Beta Beta Beta. He received the 'Outstanding Teaching Award' in 1987 and the Herbert Osborn Award in recognition of a lifetime of teaching, research and mentoring students in entomology and aquatic sciences in 2004. During his six decade career he published over 150 scientific papers on 17 different families of flies and has written book chapters on various groups of flies. Several new species of flies have been named in his honor. Dr. Foote was a generous man and contributed to the community as a founding member of the Kent Environmental Council serving as its president for 18 years. Upon retiring he donated his person library of scientific papers and specimens to the Carnegie Museum.

Of all of his many accomplishments, however, he was most proud of his family. His deep love for Anita, his wife of 60 years, was an inspiration to many. His wisdom, kindness and generosity touched many, but was most profoundly felt and appreciated by his children and grandchildren. He was the loving father of Lynnette Lawrence (Steve), Sheri Homany (Garry), Grant Foote Frericks (Matt) and Frank Foote (Tracy). He was the devoted and generous grandfather of Taryn Zobrist (Jeff), Abby Vidic, Emily Foote-Huth, Ben Foote-Huth, Graci Homany, Frank Foote, Jr., David Foote, Becca Bryant and Tyler Bryant. Dr. Foote (Papa) was deeply loved and cherished and will be deeply missed by all. His passion for learning, love of his family, and dedication to leaving the world a better place were the driving forces in his rich and wonderful life.

A celebration of his life is planned for August 2, 2014 from 3:00-5:00 p.m. at the Kent State University Hotel and Conference Center. Memorial contributions may be made to: Benjamin Foote Ecology Lecture Series Endowment, Account #34155. Checks made payable to the Kent State University Foundation may be sent to Mindy Aleman, c/o Kent State Center for Gift & Estate Planning, PO Box 5190, Kent, OH 44242-0001; the Portage County Park District Association at http://portageparkdistrict.org (follow the 'Get Involved' Menu option to Donations); and the Robinson Visiting Nurse and Hospice, 6847 N. Chestnut St., Ravenna, Oh 44266-9916. The family would like to specifically thank Hospice caregivers Tia Riemenschneider, Carolyn Mitchell and Denise Dues for their gentle care and support of Ben and our family over the past five months.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Benjamin Foote was an exceptional advisor in my career at Kent. He went so far was defending my having chosen to take my Microbiology requirement outside Kent because his colleague in charge of that course at Kent was a man who lacked the graces of inspiring and encouraging students. I studied entomology and marine biology with him and recall his deep concern and care for the environment. I worked in his laboratory as a research assistant taking photographs but, most of all, was deeply touched by his friendship. The present atmosphere in the US, for me, is a poignant reminder that he was many years ahead of his time. His classes were completely mesmerising and his attentiveness to students had no equal during my time there. We loved him!

Posted by Edward Nobel Bisamunyu    June 08, 2020

he was great dad will miss a lot.Will always remember the Montana trips

Posted by frank foote - ketchum, OK - Son   September 10, 2016

Thank you Dr. Foote for being an inspiring teacher and always being interested in your students.

Posted by Anne Cabaniss - Louisville, KY - student   October 20, 2014

I was welcomed to Kent by Ben & his wife Anita when his daughter Sheri & I met in Arizona. They opened their home to me, and I have such fond memories of their kindness and generosity. A wonderful man in so many ways!

Posted by Barb Williams - Friend   August 02, 2014

Whenever I remember Uncle Ben, I think of his calm demeanor and his love of nature. I especially recall a time many years ago at Rose Acres when he took all of us kids for a walk, pointing out various species of trees and some of the birds and animals we saw. I know he always enjoyed talking about trips out West with his family. May you always remember with joy those times with him.

Posted by Rick Newell - nephew   July 23, 2014

It can be so hard to face the first year without your loved one, but the love of family and friends can carry you through.

Posted by Ps. 55:22 - Ellenwood, GA   July 17, 2014

I went to KSU and had the pleasure of knowing Dr. Foote when I took his Invertebrate Zoology class. Dr. Foote was a wonderful teacher and he had such a vivid way of describing the animals we studied. He took a subject that could have been dry and dull and made in interesting and fun. I wish all teachers could teach with such enthusiasm.
I am very sorry for your loss and hope that the memories you have of him will help you through this time.

Posted by Deb Lichtenberger    July 17, 2014

I'm saddened to learn of Dr. Foote's passing. I had the pleasure of becoming acquainted with him and his lovely wife Anita several years ago. A kinder gentleman - and a more loving couple - you could never meet. My deepest condolences to Anita, family and friends. RIP Dr. Ben.

Posted by Lorna Kerr - Cleveland, OH   July 16, 2014

Let the sweet memories sustain and comfort you today and in the days to come.

Posted by - OH   July 13, 2014

Offering our deepest sympathies during this time.

Posted by The Staff of Bissler & Sons Funeral Home - Kent, OH   July 13, 2014

Family Album

Dr. Benjamin A. Foote
Ben Foote, Indianapolis, Dec. 14, 2013