Benjamin Jon Gustafson

Benjamin Jon Gustafson - Rochester Cremation

Benjamin Jon Gustafson, 43,  passed away on December 25, 2022, at his home, surrounded by his wife and parents.  Ben is survived by his wife, Jessica; his daughters Saida, Camille, and Greta; his parents, Jim and Vicki Gustafson; and his sister Jill (John) Nelson

Born in Denver, Colorado, the family moved to Minneapolis, MN where Ben grew up.  He received his high school diploma from  Minnehaha Academy, Minneapolis  and his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Valparaiso University, Indiana.   He earned a Masters degree in Urban Ministry from Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Ben began his engineering career with Toll Brothers and joined Hunt EAS civil engineering department  in 2009.  He became a Hunt  Associate in 2012 and a Principal in 2015.  He was the Director of the Hunt EAS Rochester Office.  Ben took pride in applying his personal values to his work at Hunt.  He was especially pleased to work on projects that improved the life of others such as libraries, healthcare, and schools.

He was a board member of the Maplewood Neighborhood Association and a member of LOVE 146 ROC City Task Force, an organization  that fights human trafficking in the Rochester, NY area.  Ben was a man of deep convictions and integrity.  He was committed to improving the lives of all people, regardless of culture, sex, language or color in his community and through working with the Rochester School system. Driven by his desire to live his faith, he would fight for equity and compassion in boardrooms and on the streets.   Ben served as a missionary in Mexico and Trinidad and as missionary engineer in Haiti.

Ben loved the outdoors from the time he was a child. He enjoyed camping, hiking, canoeing in the  Boundary Waters Wilderness and backpacking the Appalachian Trail.  From touring Italy with his wife to family vacations at the Outer Banks of North Carolina, he would relish the time exploring the outdoors and new places with his family.

Ben was a devoted family man.  His love for family radiated in everything he did.  He was wholeheartedly devoted to his wife, Jessica, and together they pursued their dreams, developed and supported each others’ individual passions, and built a family on the foundation of their love for one another and their love for Jesus Christ.

A Memorial Service for Ben will be held at at 10 AM on January 14, 2023 with reception to follow at Grace Road Church, 440 East Ave, Rochester, NY.  Memorials can be directed to Roswell Park Cancer Center.  To contribute to the search for a cure to  kidney cancer,  please designate “Cancer Research” – kidney cancer with rhabdoid features/Dr. Saby George

23 Condolences

  1. joe barone on January 5, 2023 at 8:23 am

    You could not ask for a better son-in-law Ben was one of the best, you knew he was devoted to his family I was proud to have him as part of mine the world is less with his passing

  2. April Ernisse on January 5, 2023 at 9:37 am

    I looked up to Ben as faithful member of our church family. He was compassionate and full of humility. He was a strong advocate against injustice but approached people with patience, gentleness, and humor. I am so grateful for the way he demonstrated Christ to me through his actions and words, his love for his family and for others. I am better for knowing him, and his life and faith will continue to have ripple effects in the lives of all who knew him.

  3. Michael Barone ( Uncle Mike ) on January 5, 2023 at 9:52 am

    I have never met someone who was so selfless as Ben. He was always there to help in any case and all you had to do is ask. Ben truly made the world a better place. If we all take a lesson from Ben and just be a bit like him we all can make the world a better place too.

  4. Sue Lizakowski on January 5, 2023 at 10:56 am

    Such a loss for you all. He sounds like a precious gift to the world. God gained another angel. My prayers and thoughts are with you Vicki and Jim. Love Sue

  5. Melanie Blow on January 5, 2023 at 11:00 am

    Ben was such a startlingly, profoundly good person, colleague and neighbor. My deepest condolences to his family and friends.

  6. Lindsay Trahan on January 5, 2023 at 11:05 am

    I am better person for having known and spent time with Ben. He encouraged me towards doing good and that the work we put in together to fight human trafficking mattered. When compassion fatigue set in and I got weary of the effort he would remind me of the why, point me towards Christ and tell me he had my back. Him and Jess are people who hold a sacred place in my heart, for whom I will be eternally grateful.

  7. Scott, Michelle, and Sawyer Nelson on January 5, 2023 at 11:54 am

    Ben will always remain in my memories of family reunions, childhood vacations, and that beautiful trip to the Boundary Waters with Jim and Jill. Cousins, and the experiences that we share, are irreplaceable.

    I am so thankful to have spent time with Ben and his family this past July at the lake house. Sitting around the breakfast table talking about life and parenthood, while watching the amazing energy and vibrancy of his three girls spin around us, was one of the highlights of my year. He was such a loving and attentive father.

    He will be deeply missed and we know that he goes on to clearer air and greener pastures. Our love goes with him.

  8. Runae Leonard on January 5, 2023 at 12:03 pm

    Ben was special. To us who knew him and were privileged to briefly be part of his life. Especially I know also to his creator. We prayed to keep him with us, but I know God has special work for him to do elsewhere!
    We we were blessed to have him with us such a short time.
    My heart goes out to you, Vicki, Jim, jess and those brave beautiful girls. Please know I am with you in your sorrow, but I know God has opened another door! Love you all so much!!
    Aunt Runae

  9. Carol Barone on January 5, 2023 at 3:32 pm

    Ben had a beautiful heart and soul he loved his family as well as life. I was blessed just knowing him he will be missed. Jess I know you have a big hole in your life but remember he is always with you and the girls. In everything you do he is beside you cheering you on. He was special and showed me the true meaning of a real Christian. My love is with you all.

  10. Brie Harrison (Rochester Public Library) on January 5, 2023 at 4:35 pm

    We appreciate Ben’s compassion for his community, and his work with Libraries will be sorely missed. Grateful for his leadership. Condolences to his family and friends.

  11. Rachel Clar on January 5, 2023 at 6:02 pm

    Jessica, I worked with Ben in the past when I was in solar development, and just today learned of his passing. I’m so saddened. Reading his obituary, I’m even more heartbroken for your loss, for your whole family’s loss. I’m also learning that Ben & I could have been personal friends but being colleagues didn’t allow the opportunity to realize that we had so many personal interests in common. I just wanted to send you this message as a blessing and let you know that you are in my thoughts and holding space for you & the kids in my heart.

  12. Tom Walsh on January 5, 2023 at 8:10 pm

    What a sad, sad shock for me to read of Ben’s passing. Nothing but the finest of memories of his time at COS (Church of the Saviour) in Wayne, PA. HE WAS FUN, enthusiastic, spiritually alive and caring. Of course, he is FULLY alive now, but the hole that he has left in his family is HUGE. Praying for God’s great compassion to be poured out on Jessica and the children. Thank you, Jesus, for hating death more than I do, and for coming to earth to destroy it.

  13. Anja Jabs-Devins on January 5, 2023 at 10:30 pm

    Just yesterday I looked at Gustafson’s family pictures on Facebook. I was was thinking how long it’s been that I saw Ben and Jessica.Today I see that Ben has passed away. My heart is heavy for the family .

  14. Eric Kerr on January 5, 2023 at 11:04 pm

    We met Ben, Jessica (and their kids) at New City Fellowship Church. Despite his many talents and accomplishments, Ben was unassuming and humble. He did live his convictions and; his desire was to please our Lord, Jesus Christ.

    Ben was very open about his battle with cancer; and he always showed tremendous strength and dignity. He truly honored God and we were so blessed by watching his example.

    My wife went on to work for Hunt / her connection there was Ben of course and we were so grateful for that opportunity. My wife always said Ben was a great boss. He was kind, thoughtful, encouraging, involved, purposeful.He was a wonderful leader, so we know based on his character, he will be missed on every front.

    Our thoughts are with his family; and we are praying for his children. we take comfort in believing He is in the presence of his Heavenly Father.

    Eric and Lucrecia Kerr

  15. Michael Schmidt on January 9, 2023 at 2:58 pm

    I learned today of Ben’s passing. My prayers and peaceful thoughts are with his family and friends. I had the honor of working with Ben on a variety of projects with The Rochester City School District. Ben was a man of incredible talent and integrity. Ben took great pride in his work and looked after my RCSD kids as if he they were his own. This is a tremendous loss for our community. My he rest in peace.
    Michael Schmidt
    Chief Operating Officer
    Rochester City School District

  16. Ruben Escobar on January 9, 2023 at 10:01 pm

    I had the privilege of meeting Ben during my time at HUNT. He was always a good person to talk to and to listen to what someone had to say. During my time working with him, I had the opportunity to learn many things from him. He helped mentor so many young engineers and had a good impact on so many people. I am thankful that I had the opportunity to connect with Ben after I left HUNT and express to him my deep gratitude. My thoughts and prayers go to his family in these difficult times.

  17. Joshua Rockey on January 11, 2023 at 3:01 pm

    A great man lost too soon. Benny G lives forever in my mind, and now in chapter eternal. Todd Schweihs, Benny G and you were a magnet that attracted me during recruitment to become a part of Sigma Chi and the man I am today. He later served as Mageastor, leading our pledge class to initiation. In hoc brother Benny G.

  18. Tooty Fisher on January 11, 2023 at 9:09 pm

    My condolences to Jessica, Jill, Vicki and Jim. Our family was blessed to have known Ben when he lived in Wayne, PA. He was so kind to all the Fisher family and we loved having him in our home. We have thought of him and his family many times in the years since he and Jessica moved. I know that he made a profound impression on all he interacted with in Rochester. Our love and prayers are sent your way. He is now healed and with his Heavenly Father!

  19. Erica Robinson on January 12, 2023 at 3:56 pm

    Ben was a man who I looked up to for his humility, wisdom, sincerity, and heart for standing in the gap for others. He was truly a reflection of Jesus in how he served, loved, and gave back to the world around him. I will forever hold him in my mind as an example of what love in action looks like in this world. He brought peace and laughter to others, while also being brilliant. And this world and our community is better for having had him here. He will be missed.

  20. Bruce Gustafson, Uncle on January 13, 2023 at 9:34 pm

    Dear Jess, Saida, Camille, and Greta,
    I am so sorry for the loss of Ben. He was a phenomenal husband and great father to the girls and a super son to his parents, Jim and Vicki. He was a very conscientious man with strong beliefs about the right thing to do and the number of locations where he demonstrated his courage, faith, and commitment. His friends and family will sorely miss him. He was one of the truly good guys. May Ben’s spirit rest securely with the Lord. My love and condolences to you all.

  21. Jeb Shore on January 14, 2023 at 11:49 am

    I’m so thankful that I know Ben. What a faithful servant of Jesus – his Savior, Redeemer and Friend. He has such a deep love for Jesus and responsibility for the less fortunate. It was an honor to watch Ben serve while I was an associate pastor at Church of the Saviour, shortly after Ben graduated from college. I wish I could be there today to celebrate Ben’s life and all God did through him. I can’t imagine what this must be like for Jessica, Saida, Camille and Greta. I’m praying for God’s comfort for them and all of the family.

  22. Michael Jones on January 14, 2023 at 12:48 pm

    I know Ben as a coworker and leader at Hunt. When I first met him, I envied his enthusiasm, passion, and leadership. I knew he would have an immediate impact on the firm as he showed care and compassion for his community, his projects and for his work family at Hunt. Every single time I reached out to Ben with a simple question or for support he always showed the same care and selflessness to help me and others. I’d like to thank Ben for that now. Learning about his personal life through these condolences and listening to his memorial service it is evident that he approached his entire life the same way, and he will be missed greatly. Condolences to his family and friends.

  23. Tony Eastman on December 2, 2023 at 4:42 pm

    I was a Cub Scout with Ben, his Dad Jim and my pops were the scout masters. He was a tremendous human from the day I met him. We were at the local arcade equivalent for a birthday party. They had the mini crane game where you could try to grab stuff animals. We noticed there was a prize left in the winner slot from the previous player. I would have kept the animal for sure (we were probably 9 or 10). Ben did not even think of keeping the toy and immediately began searching for its rightful owner. I suspect he continued this servant leadership throughout his life. Thoughts and prayers with Jim, Vikki and Bens family and friends.

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