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Community Leader Dies at 74

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Ben Gaston, a distinguished military veteran and civic leader, passed away at the age of 74 on November 22, 2023, in Indianola, MS. Born in Greenville, MS, on December 4, 1948, Gaston’s legacy encompasses a remarkable 42-year military career and substantial contributions to various civilian roles.

Gaston’s journey began at Greenville High School, where he graduated in 1966 before joining the U.S. Army in July 1969. Serving as an Infantryman in the 4th Infantry Division in Vietnam and Cambodia, he earned accolades such as the Soldier’s Medal, Air Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Legion of Merit.

Following his discharge, Gaston continued his education at Mississippi State University, Mississippi Delta Community College, and Delta State University, where he graduated after his military service. His commitment to education extended further, earning him a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Chemistry, an MBA in Business, and a Master’s in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.

Transitioning to civilian life, Gaston held roles at USDA, Douglas & Lomason, Lewis Grocer Company/Supervalu, Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, and Families First for Mississippi, among others. He was also elected as the District 3 Supervisor for Sunflower County.

Gaston’s military service culminated as a Brigadier General in January 2008, but he was later recalled to serve as the Assistant Adjutant General as a Major General, concluding his military career.

Remembered for his 53-year marriage to high school sweetheart Sherry Ikerd Gaston, Ben Gaston’s legacy includes his calm demeanor, sage advice, and genuine concern for others. He enjoyed outdoor pursuits such as fishing, duck hunts, and big game hunting, reflecting his diverse interests.

Visitation to celebrate Gaston’s life will be held on Monday, November 27, 2023, from 12:30 pm until 2:00 pm at First Presbyterian Church in Indianola. The funeral service, officiated by Rev. Duncan Hoopes and Rev. Carl Brannon, will commence at 2:00 pm, followed by burial at Indianola City Cemetery. Burton Funeral Home of Indianola is entrusted with the arrangements.