Hughes Family

The family saw that once Ann and Lennie had died, Ben’s life would radically change. They looked for an assisted-living residence in the area that offered high quality programs for the mentally challenged. There were none. The family realized that while they could afford to do something privately for Ben, a larger facility should be created. This residence would be dedicated to serve not only Benjamin, but other young men and women with similar disabilities.

They resolved to help establish a program which would promote close ties to the resident’s family, circle of friends, church and community; one that would deliver temporal and spiritual care for life.

The Hughes family funded the start-up costs, consulted mental health professionals, gained 501c(3) status for the project, spoke at churches, diocesan meetings and business gatherings, and brought together a blue-ribbon Board of Directors. They asked area businesses for in-kind contributions (with outstanding results), hired architect Tom Mullinax to place his architectural seal on the residence that Lennie and Ann designed, and asked and received from the Meads family, a plot of wooded land on the outskirts of Elizabeth City.

Benjamin House will always have a member of the family to serve on the Board of Directors. Additionally, the family has created a substantial Testamentary Trust funded by life insurance to provide financial assistance after their deaths.

Their commitment to Benjamin House is ongoing and impressive.