Sylvia Alma (Benson) (Kahriman) Caron

Sylvia Alma (Benson) (Kahriman) Caron, age 100, of Ashland, passed away on Thursday, October 31, 2019 at her home on her 100th birthday. She was born on her family’s ranch near the town of Golva, North Dakota, the daughter of John and Lily (Leuenberger) Benson.

Sylvia worked as a waitress, while going to high school in Ashland. She moved to New York City with her best friend Charlotte as a young teen during the Great Depression. Primarily working as a waitress in New York City, she would often be sent temporarily to various cities all over the eastern United States for her work. Working at the Laurel and the Pines resort in the Catskill Mountains of upstate NY was a particularly fond memory for her. Also took some nurses training and did some modeling while in NYC before moving to Chicago where she would meet and marry her first husband Tom Kahriman, a chef and immigrant from Greece. The family, at that point counting five children, would move to Ashland in 1950. She would be widowed with six children in 1958. In 1962 she would meet and marry her second husband French-Canadian-American Richard Caron who worked as a crewmember aboard one of the great iron ore ships. Son Maurice would follow. In 1964 the family, including two of the children, would move to Downriver Detroit where she would bear the last two of her ultimately nine children. Hit by a car as a pedestrian in 1973 would end her lifelong career as a professional waitress, often at the highest levels during her lifetime, a fact she was extremely proud of. In 1982, after taking courses from the University of Michigan –Ann Arbor, she earned a license in the field of Geriatric Nutrition. By the time she was widowed for the second time in 1996 she would be serving 42 elderly female clients, with various medical needs, in the immediate surrounding neighborhood where she lived in Riverview. Never seeking nor accepting help from others, while always ready and eager to help others at any time, numerous neighbors believed her to be their very best friend. In 1996 she would return to Ashland with her Downs Syndrome son Maurice, her most beloved child. In 1998, at the age of 78, she would purchase a house on the corner of Chapple Ave. and 7th St. W. with a 30 year mortgage would pay it off early). There she lived out the remainder of her life with Maurice close to her, until passing away on the day of her 100th birthday on Halloween day.

She is survived by 3 daughters, Kathryn “Kitty” (Terry) Weese – Minneapolis, MN, Carolyn Benson – Rochester, MN, Dinny (Gary) Bolka – Ashland, 2 sons, Jean “John” Lawrence Caron – Ashland and Maurice Richard Caron – Ashland, grandchildren, Jean (Jon) Haukaas, Nikki Bolka, Jesse (Sarah) Bolka, Tom (Mary Lois) Bolka, Natalie Cusimano, Samira Sidi Warsame, Simone Christine Caron Warsame, 3 great-grandchildren, Xarek Cusimano, Arete Bolka and Ava Bolka, 2 sisters, Myrtle Heim and Goldie Meade, a sister-in-law, Peggy Benson and numerous nieces and nephews.

Besides her two husbands, she was preceded in death by her parents, 3 sons, Demetri Kahriman, Nicholas Kahriman and Michael Kahriman, a daughter, Christine “Cissy” Charlotte Caron, a grandson, Jan Huber, a granddaughter, Kathy Kahriman, sisters, Edna Benson, Alice Benson, Daisy Benson, Louise Benson, Lettie (Stanley) Russell and Rose Benson, brothers, Carson Benson, John (June) Benson, Calvin (Dorothy) Benson and Alvin Benson, and 2 brothers-in-law, Bill Heim and Clyde Meade.

A funeral service will be held at 11:00 A.M., Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at the Roberts Funeral Home in Ashland, WI with Pastor Robert Stauffer officiating. Visitation will be from 10:00 – 11:00 A.M., Tuesday at the funeral home. Burial will follow in the Mt. Hope Cemetery in Ashland.

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