Eugene Alfred Denison

Published 8:59 pm Monday, August 27, 2018

Eugene Alfred “Gene” Denison, 88, of 112 Ililda Drive, passed away Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018, in his home.

Mr. Denison was born in Philadelphia, Pa., on Feb. 20, 1930, and was the son of the late Theodore Edward and Miriam Weisman Denison. In 1948, he graduated from Central High School in Philadelphia as part of its 190th graduating class. He attended the University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, where he was a member of Beta Sigma Rho fraternity, which later merged with Pi Lambda Phi, and graduated in 1952 with a degree in economics and industrial management. After working in the industry for several years, he later owned and operated a women’s apparel store, Denison’s, for 45 years. In 1978, he married his second wife, Frances Jean “Becky” Campbell. After retiring, Gene went to work on a third career at the Suffolk News-Herald, where he enjoyed his varied jobs for almost nine more years. When he married Margaret Ann, he moved one more time to his final home in Hertford, and began a new career as a salesman with Northeastern Garage Door Company. His hobbies included woodworking, gardening and photography. He loved to create things and enjoyed all of his careers for the opportunities they gave him to meet people.

During his years in Suffolk, he became active in civic and community affairs, serving six years as president of the original Downtown Suffolk Association, eight years on the advisory board of the Suffolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority (one year as vice-chairman and one as chairman), and 12 years on the Suffolk Salvation Army Advisory Board (one as chairman). He was also active with the Career and Technical Education programs in both the Suffolk Public Schools and the Pruden Center for Industry and Technology. Gene served as a member of both councils and as chairman of each for one year. He also served on several blue ribbon committees of the Suffolk City Council. His involvement in the community continued with membership in the Suffolk chapter of the Kiwanis Club International. As both a member of the board of directors and as president twice, he remained active for more than 20 years.

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Gene attended Hertford United Methodist Church with his wife, Margaret Ann, but he remained a member of Congregation Beth El synagogue in Norfolk and never wavered in adhering to his Jewish faith.

In addition to his parents and his second wife of 23 years, he was preceded in death by his older brother, Matthew Richard Denison; his brother-in-law, Charlie Banks; and Margaret Ann’s son, Scott Williams.

Surviving along with his wife of 14 years, Margaret Ann Banks Denison, are his daughter, Terri Joan Budman (Steve); his son, Karl Louis Denison (Lisa); five grandchildren, Madeline and Deni Budman, and Jacob, Sammy and Zara Denison. Also surviving are Margaret Ann’s son, Howard Williams (Vicki); her daughter, Sherry Kostman; her four grandchildren, Will Williams, Lauren Johnson (Travis), Jennifer Traynor (Kevin) and Robyn Kravitz; two great-granddaughters, Emory and Rory; her sisters, Linda Banks, Brenda White (Kent) and Lee Ann Banks; her nieces and nephews, and Gene’s many dear and loving friends.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday in the Miller & Van Essendelft Funeral Chapel, 1125 Harvey Point Road, Hertford, with Cantor Jennifer Rueben officiating. Friends may join the family in the funeral home immediately following the service on Wednesday, and all other times at the residence.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters, Development Department, 601 Children’s Lane, Norfolk, VA 23507.

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