Longtime Masonic Cemetery director fi...

Longtime Masonic Cemetery director fired over bookkeeping disagreement

There are 92 comments on the Las Cruces Sun-News story from May 28, 2011, titled Longtime Masonic Cemetery director fired over bookkeeping disagreement. In it, Las Cruces Sun-News reports that:

The longtime director of the Masonic Cemetery in Las Cruces has been fired. The 26-year tenure of Judy Bennett, a history buff knowledgeable about local cemeteries, was terminated March 16, said Pat Demchok, grand master of the Aztec Masonic Lodge No.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Las Cruces Sun-News.

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Joel Martinez

El Paso, TX

#83 May 31, 2011
Disgusting wrote:
<quoted text>
Prove to me that each one of those trailers are individually owned. Most of those have had several occupants or have been abandoned.
Yes, she is a slum lord because she does not care for the condition of the area and the sewage system is not up to current regulation.
Prove me wrong.
Little hard for them to prove anything to you, um, "Disgusting" when you don't give your real name in a public forum.

And aren't most trailer parks ugly by definition anyway? I can think of a couple in Las Cruces - city limits - that could be described using your first name alone.
Valley Native

Albuquerque, NM

#84 May 31, 2011
This thread is a classic example of what happens when someone with a since of entitlement goes to the paper and tries to drum-up support for there cause. In this case the reaction of the public doesn't meet the intended reaction resulting in post after post of insults.

Next time don't wash your dirty laundry in public if you don't want people pointing out the little brown stains on the seat of your underwear.

Silly rabbit, tricks are for kids.

Since: May 11

Location hidden

#85 May 31, 2011
Joel Martinez wrote:
<quoted text>
Kid...I, and no one else, paid attention to anything you had to say after you dismissed your own grandmother as "old" and "eccentric". It is clear you are guilty of believing exactly what the people who fired her believe - she's old, and someone had to put her down.
After going through four pages of comments, it's clear this woman needs an attorney and a bunch of apologies.
That was exactly why I made the comment to the relatives that I did, but I heard it was met with some animosity by one of the relatives. Such a shame too because I meant no offense and stated so.

Had whichever one it was wanted to become combative, I would have thought it would have been towards those slandering their grandmother worse than they were. It was silly for her to assume I had issues with her personally or to think I was attacking her. I know and respect Judy Bennett. I also agree, it would be sad for Judy to come on here and read the inflammatory comments about her, especially those that weren't meant to be inflammatory that were written by her own family.

Your comment was precise and for being direct, so there could be no misunderstanding of what they inadvertently did to their grandma.
Joe Garcia

Las Cruces, NM

#86 May 31, 2011
Valley Native wrote:
This thread is a classic example of what happens when someone with a since of entitlement goes to the paper and tries to drum-up support for there cause. In this case the reaction of the public doesn't meet the intended reaction resulting in post after post of insults.
Next time don't wash your dirty laundry in public if you don't want people pointing out the little brown stains on the seat of your underwear.
Silly rabbit, tricks are for kids.
I've been following this story since reading a nice little article earlier this month about the cemetery where my father is buried and read the comments to the article saying this woman was fired. I would think the newspaper people read the comments to their stories and read the same thing I did. That's much more likely than accusing the woman of going to the paper. I bet the paper went to her.

Look, I'm still following this thread because the drama is entertaining. I admit it. But you seem to be enjoying this too much to not have a dog in this fight. "Tricks are for kids"? For kids? Maybe there's something to what these folks are saying about anti-old.

Since: May 11

Location hidden

#87 Jun 3, 2011
Joe Garcia wrote:
<quoted text>
I've been following this story since reading a nice little article earlier this month about the cemetery where my father is buried and read the comments to the article saying this woman was fired. I would think the newspaper people read the comments to their stories and read the same thing I did. That's much more likely than accusing the woman of going to the paper. I bet the paper went to her.
Look, I'm still following this thread because the drama is entertaining. I admit it. But you seem to be enjoying this too much to not have a dog in this fight. "Tricks are for kids"? For kids? Maybe there's something to what these folks are saying about anti-old.
Another name Otis?
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#88 Jun 10, 2011
native New Mexican wrote:
For the record - I am not Mr. Demchock. I am one of his loyal customers, waiting for him to be back to his regular work schedule. I am also not one of the people helping to go through the piles of junk in that office, but I have been in to see and will give witness if it becomes necessary.
I met Ms. Bennett several years ago and have nothing against her. Ms. Bennett truly cared, no one argues that. Her historical knowledge is extensive. Bookkeeping, records filing and following the laws were not her strong area.
I've known Mr. Demchock for 15 years now. He is a man of high integrity. The problems he is working on for the Masonic Cemetery are going to be resolved and 'professional quality' management will be in place. This will all be resolved and the 'sooner done, with less laundry aired publicly' the better.
<quoted text>
Yeah, right...not Demchock
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#89 Jun 10, 2011
native New Mexican wrote:
Mr. Demchock has plenty of 'jobs' waiting for this 'SNAFU' to be resolved. As an independent contractor, he doesn't have to work 8 - 5. His regular customers know his quality of work and will wait for him to be available for their HVAC/electrical/concrete/struc tural/tile improvements. He's still solving 'emergencies' all around town in the evenings after a full day working for free for the Masons.
<quoted text>
This is a joke, right?
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#90 Jun 10, 2011
Sarcastic Bombastic wrote:
<quoted text>
It's almost as if you are trying to create a cloud around Mrs. Judy Bennett that casts a shadow of incompetence, ignorance, and worse...of being unprofessional. Let me clarify something for you: YOU COULDN'T BE MORE OUT OF LINE! Mrs. Bennett has always been a very professional, yet downed to earth lady. She's one of sincere compassion for the ordeals that the families' of the deceased have had to endure. She is the person always willing to go the extra mile to assist those that enter that office.
Ms. Bennett knows that business with her eyes closed, backwards and forward, and with complete accuracy. She's a lady of high morals, and treats everyone with complete dignity...as she'd like others to treat her. Yet, it seems the new person at the helm seems to have utilized underhanded methods to oust Ms. Bennett. He made a huge mistake in doing so. It does appear that there is some sort of impropriety in the works but NOT ON THE PART OF MRS. BENNETT, but on the part of Mr. Pat Demchok. Furthermore, it also appears that age discrimination could be factoring in as well.
I'd be looking hard at Mr. Demchok's agenda, especially when he's wanting to bring in someone at $65.00 per hour full time vs. the services above & beyond 40 hours per week that Mrs. Bennett worked representing Masonic Cemetery without trying to collect overtime pay. Her extra time serving the public in need of Masonic Cemetery's services was often done pro bono by Mrs. Bennett, with a loving heart and a smile on her face. She has the heart of a humble servant and to have been treated in such a reprehensible manner is an outrage!
When I had to deal with the hardest ordeal ever in my life, Mrs. Bennett was a pillar of strength as well as a person of great comfort. She's a truly wise woman & she was an asset to Masonic Cemetery. I know several others that will attest to the same.
Mr. Pat Demchok, it appears you let your new position go to your head and are on a power trip now. How sad, that you have to show such bravado against an extremely intelligent and competent elderly lady! Your parents would surely be ashamed.
AMEN!
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#91 Jun 10, 2011
Amazing wrote:
Perhaps Mr. Demchok chose to take the high road and not air the lodge's dirty laundry in public. He is obviously not the one who went to the paper for the Judy Bennett pity party. Age discrimination? Gender discrimination? Is she also disabled? A veteran? Child-hood Abused?(LCSN favorite descriptive phrases to elicit sympathy). Get real, folks. Incompetence is incompetence, and if she truly is so dedicated, why is she so unwilling to allow anyone else to see what's going on? Does she think she will live forever?
Don't think so? You might be surprised.
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#92 Jun 10, 2011
INFORMED LAS CRUCEN wrote:
All the facts are obviously not known. Mr. Demchok has had his own business for 30 years. All of his work for the masons is voluntary. Mrs Bennett is a very nice person, however that does not mean she is doing her job correctly. When a CPA is brought in (at $65.00) and someone is fired immediately afterwards you have to question it. How long until we see criminal charges filed on her? The mason organizations is known to be of high integrity. I feel that Mrs. Bennett should have left on her own accord before the CPA was brought in. I live in one of the houses Mr. Demchok build and could not be happier. The few and minor problems I have had he has taken care of promptly and with no problems. I'm sure if we knew all the facts we would agree with the decision of Mr. Demchok and the Masons.
The Masons didn't make this decision...Demchock had his own agenda.
Disgusted

Rio Rancho, NM

#93 Jun 10, 2011
I am totally disgusted with what happened to Mrs. Judy Bennett. Demchock has been after her job for two years and had to wait until he became Master (not Grand Master) of the Lodge to find some way to remove her.

Of course when you have 11 people including children living in your home, you have to have some way to support them. What better way than to hire a bookkeeper (at $65/hour) and then cook up some way to remove Mrs. Bennett and put yourself or family in her job.
Sounds like a plush job.(Of course he claims to be a contractor, but he can’t even be found in the phone book.)

Disagreement over bookkeeping was what he targeted in the removal of Mrs. Bennett because he sure couldn’t target her dedication to her job, her compassion or her honesty. She only refused to turn over the checkbook until her name was taken off the signature card down at the bank. She was protecting herself because she didn’t trust Demchock. I think she had a right to feel that way.

Demchock’s ‘shenanigans’ have affected not only the cemetery, but the Lodge also. I just hope they are able to stand up to him and put things back together when his term is over. It’s a disgusting situation, but every once in awhile a man becomes Master and goes on a “power trip”…I just hope they can hold on through the year…but it’ll be a long year.

As for the cemetery…I pray that the Lodge keeps a close eye as to what is going on. Demchock has already proven to be deceitful and a liar (Judy is a wonderful honest person!! "…nothing but good to say about Bennett.” "I loved her and thought the world of her,") and there is no telling what else he will do. We can all hope and pray he doesn’t throw away important and historical information. I can tell you the friendliness and compassion is now gone when you go into the office.

Pat Demchock…aka native New Mexican, etal…you have no idea the number of people you hurt with your coup. Mrs. Bennett has more friends than you will ever have, who know of her honesty and dedication. She has helped more people through their grief because of her loving compassion, than you will ever know. I know, after experiencing it myself on more than one occasion. You, on the other hand, have lost the respect of many in the Masonic community…some of which will come to light in the near future. You have surely given Masonry a black eye. Shame on you!
rider

Marquette, MI

#94 Jun 27, 2011

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