Grassland Middle School teacher dies on trip with students - WKRN News 2

Grassland Middle School teacher dies on trip with students

Posted: Updated: Oct 23, 2012 06:34 PM
Jim Benton, 33, taught math at Grassland Middle School in Williamson County. Jim Benton, 33, taught math at Grassland Middle School in Williamson County.
FRANKLIN, Tenn. -

An eighth grade math teacher at Grassland Middle School in Williamson County passed away Monday at a hospital in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Thirty-three-year-old Jim Benton was on a non-sponsored school trip with students when he became ill and was taken to a nearby hospital.

School officials say his cause of death is not known.

Benton's students were notified of his death Monday night.  Letters will also be sent home to parents.

"I think the kids are going to be devastated. Mr. Benton had a casual spirit about him that was contagious. The kids gravitated toward him almost from day one," said Dr. Lily Leffler, principal of Grassland Middle School.

The California native was hired by Williamson County Schools over the summer and was in his first year teaching in the district.  He had taught elsewhere for the past decade.

Grief counselors will be at the school when students return from fall break Wednesday morning.

The funeral will take place in California.  Arrangements are incomplete.

A memorial service is being planned for family and friends in Tennessee at a later time.

Benton leaves behind a wife and a 10-month-old daughter the couple adopted last December.

In a statement, his wife said, "Jim Benton made an unforgettable mark on the lives of those he knew - family, friends and students alike. He and I were fortunate to travel the world together, but nothing compared to the journey on which he led thousands of students in his life. Although our hearts ache from his loss, his legacy of education and kindness will continue."

Benton's family asks memorials are made to Oak Park Unified School District, Attn: Dr. Tony Knight, 5801 East Conifer Street, Oak Park, CA 91377.

Funds will support a student who would not otherwise be able to attend the eighth grade trip and/or the senior class trip to Europe at Medea Creek Middle School.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 2:49 PM EDT2014-04-22 18:49:19 GMT
    Image from CNN/KHOU-TVImage from CNN/KHOU-TV
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...More >>
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...More >>
  • 38 dogs rescued in north Nashville dog fighting bust

    38 dogs rescued in north Nashville dog fighting bust

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:09 PM EDT2014-04-23 22:09:20 GMT
    A drug bust last week led to Tuesday’s seizure of 38 dogs from an alleged dog fighting ring in north Nashville.More >>
    A drug bust last week led to Tuesday’s seizure of 38 dogs from an alleged dog fighting ring in north Nashville.More >>
  • Giles County student injured, another charged in fight over gum

    Giles County student injured, another charged in fight over gum

    A Giles County middle school student is facing criminal charges and his classmate facial surgery after the two got into a fight over gum.More >>
    A Giles County middle school student is facing criminal charges and his classmate facial surgery after the two got into a fight over gum.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WKRN (Young Broadcasting station). All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.