Benjamin Howard Cotton (Uncle Benny) age 31, died Sunday, October 4th, 2009 from the results of a tragic vehicle accident. Ben was born on July 1st, 1978 to Howard and Colette (Artz) Cotton in Hillsboro, ND. He grew up on the family farm near Cummings, ND and graduated from Hillsboro High School in 1997. Ben was baptized into the Catholic faith at St. Rose of Lima on July 15th, 1978. During his formative years, he was active in 4-H, sports and family activities. He received All-state football honors, and participated in the State Wrestling tournament. Ben attended NDSU and later graduated from U of M Crookston in 2001 with a degree in Animal Industry Management. He ranched in the Hillsboro area until 2007 when he ventured west to the oilfields, and was employed by M&K Hotshots and ASK transportation. He had a tremendous ability and knowledge of all animals. Not only did he love raising animals, he found joy in butchering and sausage making. Ben was a lover of people. He considered anyone and everyone he met a friend. He had a special place in his heart for his six nieces who were the love of his life. Ben is survived by his parents, Howard & Colette, Cummings, ND, siblings: Adam (Sarah) Cotton, Mandan, ND, Grace (Eric) Ptacek, Hillsboro, ND, Andrea Cotton, Bismarck, ND and Joshua Cotton, Cummings, ND. His six nieces: Jaylin, Klaire, Delaney and Avah Cotton and Morgan & McKenzie Ptacek. His maternal grandmother, Regina Artz, Minot, ND and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Wilbur & Grace Cotton and Harold Artz. Visitation: 4-7 p.m. Friday, October 9, 2009 at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church in Hillsboro, ND – and also one hour prior to the service in the church on Saturday Prayer Service: 7 p.m. Friday at the church with a rosary at 6:45 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial: 10:30 a.m. Saturday, October 10 at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church. Burial: St. Rose of Lima Catholic Cemetery in Hillsboro Wildeman Funeral home of Hillsboro is in charge of arrangements. Online guest book at Donations will be made to the Trail, Bottineau, and Mountrail County foodshelves in lieu of thank you notes. A memorial educational fund will be established for the children of Ben’s siblings. The world will be dimmer without Ben’s big, bright, beautiful smile.

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