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Arlan Bendert

RAPID CITY | Arlan Eugene Bendert, cherished husband, brother, grandfather, great-grandfather, and friend, passed away on Jan. 7, 2019, surrounded by family.

Arlan was born to Arlow and Esther Bendert on Dec. 9, 1936, in Beresford. He graduated from Rapid City High School in 1955.

Arlan, at the age of 12, began working at Reptile Gardens. From transporting the first crocodiles to being the star of the snake shows, he devoted 10 years to the Gardens.

Arlan’s professional career began in 1959 at Robbins and Stearns Lumber Co. He then transferred to R&S Construction and on to Glen Barber Associates, where he worked as a construction foreman. Arlan then went on to start his own business in the construction field until his retirement.

Through his many accolades, Arlan’s love for hunting and guns was evident. Arlan was a member of the Rapid City Rifle team, winning many matches at the SD State Rifle Tournaments in the 60s and 70s, and went on to win the State Championship in 1967. He also devoted 10 years of service to the SD Hunter Safety courses by teaching others about his passion. Arlan was an active member and served as President of the local and state chapters of the Izaack Walton League and was a patron member of the NRA.

On Easter Sunday, April 6, 1958, Arlan married the love of his life, Sharon Irene Kloth of Redfield. They were blessed by the arrival of three beautiful daughters: Dara Lynn, Sharla Jo, and Cynthia Lee.

Arlan is survived by wife, Sharon Bendert; children, Dara (Jeff) Baum and Cyndi (Scott) Stryker; grandchildren, Megan Baum (Travis Haan), Kallie (Ryan) Gebhard and Stephanie Stryker (Jon DeGooyer); great-grandchild, Sophia Gebhard; brother, Dean (Angela) Bendert; and several nephews and cousins.

Arlan was preceded in death by parents, Arlow and Esther Bendert; and infant daughter, Sharla Jo Bendert.

Celebration of Life services will be at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 12, at Kirk Funeral Home, with Pastor Paul Winckler officiating.

In lieu of flowers, donations will be given to South Dakota Youth Hunting Adventures.

Family and friends may sign Arlan’s online guestbook at

the life of: Bendert, Arlan E.
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