Steve Benko, a lifelong New Canaan resident known to local families through five decades as head of the town Recreation Department, died overnight, officials said Saturday. A former chief of New Canaan Fire Co.,#1, he died “after a very courageous, but mercifully short, battle with cancer,” the organization’s president, Rob Mallozzi, said in an email to Fire Company members. “His family was by his side.”
“It is a day of profound sadness to our Fire Department and Company and our entire town,” Mallozzi said. “Please keep the Benko family in your prayers.”
First Selectman Kevin Moynihan issued this statement Saturday: “New Canaan lost one of its most dedicated and long-serving Town employees Friday night when Steve Benko passed away at Stamford Hospital surrounded by his family after a short battle with cancer. Steve served 50 years as Recreation Director of the Town of New Canaan and was a mentor and friend to generations of youth, Town employees, Fire Co.