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Robert Benjamin, 92, autoworker Oct. 20, 1914 -- April 20, 2007

Robert Benjamin of Buffalo, a retired autoworker and well-known neighborhood volunteer, died Thursday in Harbor Heights Nursing Home after a long illness. He was 92.

Born in South Carolina, Mr. Benjamin worked as a sharecropper before moving to Buffalo in the 1930s. At that time, he got a job at Bethlehem Steel Corp., becoming one of the first black men in his department. After that, he worked at American Machine and eventually retired from General Motors Corp. in the late 1970s.

He is survived by four daughters, Margaret Green, Shirley Richard, Marylou Bragg and Mattie Johnson; four sons, Robert Jr., Sylvester, George Benjamin and Shawn Barron; a longtime companion, Lanell Brown; and a special friend, Jesse Page.

Services will be at noon Thursday in Friendship Baptist Church, 402 Clinton St., where a wake will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

[H/JONES]

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