Phyllis Bendure, who was honored by Gov. Brian Sandoval in his State of the State address as one of Nevada’s oldest living World War II veterans, died Friday morning.
The Carson City resident was 98.
Bendure graduated from The University of Nevada in 1941 with a degree in education. While there, she served as a tutor to other students including football great Marion Motley, who went on to a pro career and is now a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
She was hired as a teacher in Eureka County and also taught at Yerington High School. But she joined the Women’s Army Corps in 1943 saying that, by then, most of her friends had enlisted.
During the war, her jobs included handling top-secret information as one of the WACs assigned to Gen. George C. Marshall at the Pentagon.
Bendure said she accompanied Marshall to the Roosevelt-Churchill conference in Quebec in 1944, even having tea with Mrs. Roosevelt and Mrs. Churchill.
It was at that conference she said she began collecting patches from military attendees from around the world.
“They would give me their extra patches,” she said.
Her mother crocheted those patches into a quilt she has kept, saying eventually she would donate it to a museum.
She was a staff sergeant when discharged from the military in 1946 and returned to Nevada where she resumed her teaching career and married Ted Bendure, who had also been recently discharged.
They had three children: Ted, Fred and Sue., all of whom live in Nevada.
Altogether, she taught for 40 years before retiring in 1983.
The family is in the process of making arrangements.