Benjamin E. Greenwell, 88, of Marietta, Georgia, passed away on December 16, 2012, at Piedmont Newnan Hospital, Newnan, Georgia.
Benjamin Elmer Greenwell was born in Monmouth, Illinois, on April 26, 1924, to Myrtle (Harrison) and Elmer Greenwell. He grew up in Viola, Illinois, where his father operated Greenwell Drug from 1912 until he retired in 1959. Following graduation from Viola Community High School in 1941, Ben entered Monmouth College, Monmouth, Illinois, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree with Cum Laude honors in 1945. He served two years in the United States Navy during World War II before earning his Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry from the University of Illinois.
Ben met Gail Cantrell during their employment at Abbott Laboratories in Chicago, and they were married June 30, 1951. They moved to Baudette, Minnesota, in 1959 when Ben joined Rowell Laboratories as Vice President of Research. Ben headed up Rowell’s research and development department during the company’s growth years; he led the development of Chenix, the first US-approved drug for dissolution of gallstones, approved in 1983. Ben moved to Marietta in 1985 when Rowell Laboratories merged with Marietta-based Reid-Provident. The following year the company was purchased by Solvay & Cie of Belgium. Ben remained with Solvay until his retirement in 1989.
Ben was a lifetime member of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Following retirement he became a collector of antique pottery. He endeared himself to many with his story telling, humor and gentlemanly ways. He was much loved and is deeply missed. Friends can visit his online memorial at http://benjamin.greenwell.muchloved.com.
Ben is preceded in death by his parents, his sister Lucretia “Cotty” Jacobs, and his grandson David Benyo. He is survived by daughters Heather Greenwell of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Michele Benyo of Bloomington, Minnesota; and Melanie Gehl of Newnan, Georgia; grandchildren Ian Gehl, Ethan Gehl, Bailey (Gehl) Appel and Deanna Benyo, and former wife Gail Greenwell.
Ben was cremated at Medford-Peden Funeral Home and Crematory, Marietta. His ashes will be placed in the Greenwell family plot at Viola Cemetery, Viola, Illinois.
Memorials may be given to ChildFund International. Ben had a particular love of children and sponsored children through ChildFund (formerly Christian Children’s Fund) for many years. Visit www.childfund.org or mail a donation to ChildFund International, 2821 Emerywood Parkway, Richmond, VA 23294.