In Memoriam

Class of 1973


Dr. Michael D. Benner died of lymphoma on Sept. 14, 2011 in Olympia, Wash. He was 64.

Dr. Benner was born on Jan. 3, 1947 in Seattle. He graduated from Blanchet High School in 1964 and attended the University of Washington, where he rowed in the Varsity Boat Club and was named Commodore (Head of the VBC). In 1968, he received a BS degree in zoology. He coached the Green Lake High School crew team from 1968-69.

Dr. Benner received his DDS from the School of Dentistry in 1973. He then joined the U.S. Army as a dentist to serve our country for what he thought would be two years, but ended up being 20. During that time he received advanced education and training to become an endodontist. After a great run in the military, he retired as a colonel at Fort Lewis (now Joint Base Lewis-McChord), Wash., in 1993 and joined his dental school classmate Fred Gonzalez in an endodontic practice in Olympia.

Dr. Benner was a member of the Thurston-Mason County Dental Society, Washington State Dental Association of Endodontists, American Dental Association and American Association of Endodontists.

He was an avid golfer, kayaker, tennis player and scuba diver. In recent years he took many memorable diving trips to Thailand, the Galapagos Islands and Dominica and enjoyed many travel adventures with his fiancée, Joan Sullivan.

Dr. Benner is survived by his children, Sarah of San Francisco and Matt of Denver; fiancée Joan Sullivan; and siblings Patrick Benner and Sally Jo Benner. He was preceded in death by his wife, Victoria (Anderson) Benner.


Dr. Merle Clifford Herbison died on Nov. 22, 2019, in Seattle. He was 75.

Dr. Herbison graduated from Shoreline High School in 1962. He received a BS degree in zoology from Washington State University in 1966, followed by three years in the U.S. Army. Upon his arrival in Korea, he was given the assignment of dental hygienist only because he was available. He cleaned everyone’s teeth, from generals to privates, after being shown how on one patient.

He had previously considered medical school, but with his Army training and experience, dentistry was his choice. He was happy and grateful to be a part of the dental community for the rest of his life.

Dr. Herbison practiced in Everett, Wash., for four years and in Bothell, Wash., for 42 years. He was a member of the Snohomish County Dental Society.

He was a lifelong passionate golfer, and preferred road trips to flying. He also enjoyed driving his SUV to high mountain and saltwater destinations. He coached youth baseball and basketball. He looked forward to and appreciated gatherings of family and friends, good food, dogs, horses, fishing, campfires, and spending time at the family cabins on Puget Sound and at White Salmon, Wash.

Dr. Herbison is survived by his wife, Connie; dentist son Blake (Jennifer), and grandchildren Robert, Elizabeth, James, and Molly; and attorney son Bennet (Jessica), and grandchildren Ethan and Aiden. (Dignity Memorial)


Dr. HolmesDr. Charles Oliver “Chuck” Holmes passed away on April 1, 2014. Practicing privately in Des Moines, Wash., he had a career that spanned more than 40 years.

Early in his career, Dr. Holmes was active in the Seattle-King County Dental Society, serving on numerous committees. He was past president of the UW’s Psi Omega dental fraternity, whose house he donated to the School of Dentistry with the national fraternity’s consent after the chapter became inactive. Proceeds from the sale funded the Psi Omega scholarship, which continues to be awarded annually.

Dr. Holmes is survived by his wife, Kathe; and his son, Chas.


Dr. Thomas HossfeldDr. Thomas Lee “Tom” Hossfeld passed on Aug. 6, 2021 in Arizona. He was 77.

He was born in Enid, Okla., to Helen F. Hite and Loyd F. Hossfeld. He was the eldest of three children and part of a military family. His education spanned multiple locations, including Tucson, Bossier City, La., Bermuda, and Newfoundland. He graduated from Northern Arizona University, where he played on the varsity golf team and was a member of the Blue Key Honor Society and Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. After graduation he attended the UW, where he obtained a teaching degree and taught junior high math and science. He then attended the School of Dentistry, joining the Navy reserves during that time.

After his naval service, Dr. Hossfeld set up practice in Tucson. He enjoyed the challenge of caring for and building relationships with patients, many of whom became friends. His avocations included exhibiting and breeding dogs. In 1967, he acquired his first Scottish terrier. Along the way he added Dandie Dinmont terriers and standard wire-haired dachshunds. He was approved to judge all terrier breeds, as well as 19 hound breeds and Best in Show.  He was a member of the Scottish Terrier Club of America (STCA) since 1984. He served the organization as a board member, worked with the Illustrated Standard Committee, and co-chaired the Judges Education Committee. For his contributions, he was awarded a Silver Service medallion.

He was also a member of the Scottish Terrier Club of California, the Dandie Dinmont Club of America, and the Desert Valley Dachshund Club. In Tucson, he was a member of the Cañada
del Oro (CDOKC) and Madera Canyon Kennel Clubs, serving as an officer and working many hours to help the clubs host annual shows. In 2020, CDOKC awarded him the AKC Outstanding
Sportsmanship medallion for positively influencing the sport of purebred dogs.

Dr. Hossfeld was a longtime member of the UA Wildcat Club and rarely missed a football or basketball game. He was most proud of being in attendance for the Wildcat Final Four Championship in 1997 and subsequently attended several other Final Four tournaments.

He had an artistic eye and used this skill to fashion unique jewelry for his wife, Janie, and create bronze statues. The couple loved traveling, especially cruising European rivers and experiencing Europe’s Christmas markets. He loved fly fishing and tied his own flies and made his own fly rods. His prize catches ranged from steelhead to halibut and salmon. He had a wonderful sense of humor, took great pleasure in making dozens of tamales at Christmastime with his wife’s family, and loved nothing more than a rousing political debate.

Dr. Hossfeld is survived by his wife of 54 years, Janie L. Nuñez; brother Dennis (Tath), and sister Vicki. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother-in-law Eduardo “Ed” Nuñez and mother-in-law Dolores L. Ortiz. (Vistoso Funeral Home)