Patricia Ann (Bensen) Lukaszewski


Patricia Ann (Bensen) Lukaszewski
November 26, 1947 – June 10, 2020

Patricia (Bensen) Lukaszewski lived with a dry sense of humor, a healthy dose of common sense, and a tremendous amount of love. She died the same way. 

Not one for pomp and circumstance, Pat would always choose blue jeans over evening gowns. She’d take a good burger over the fanciest seven-course meal. She’d rather have dinner with one good friend than spend the evening visiting with a roomful of people. She loved word games, whether the Jumble in the daily paper, an in-person game of Scrabble, or a session of Wordscapes on her phone. There was always a jigsaw puzzle in progress at her house, and her rule was that everyone had to find at least one piece of the puzzle before bedtime.  While she was a fan of puzzles, Pat wasn’t a fan of cliffhangers. When she started a book, she’d read the ending first. She’d watch the first fifteen minutes of a movie to establish the plot, and then she’d skip to the end – even Hallmark movies (and who doesn’t know how those are going to end)? She loved watching college basketball, but she’d leave the room if the game was too close and just watch it the next night instead. She said life was stressful enough without being stressed for entertainment.

Born in 1947 to Fred and Ann Bensen, Pat grew up in the Chicagoland area with her favorite little sister, Linda. Pat was a teacher and later an accountant. She was married to Tom Lukaszewski for 25 years, and they raised three daughters together, Lisa (Diane), Karen (Mike), and Lauren (Jen). Family occasions and milestones were always celebrated with her sister’s family, the Dassos (Linda, Ed Jr., Ed III, Fred, and Michelle). Pat became a cat person later in life, which is empirical evidence that one should “never say never.” Her cat Jasmine was her constant, bossy, and loyal companion.

In 2005, Pat moved to Kansas City to be near her grandsons, Evan and Tony. The boys adored their Grandma as much as she adored them. It would be impossible to count the books, puzzles, cookies, Legos, field trips, and sleepovers they shared. That number would be dwarfed only by the hugs, practical jokes, and good-natured ribbing that they exchanged.  

Pat retired to Kure Beach, North Carolina. She loved the laid-back vibe of her beach town, and she cherished the community of friends she found there.  She never took for granted that she had achieved her lifelong dream of living near the ocean. Her family will always feel her with them when they stroll on the beach or look at the waves.

Pat and her family have the deepest gratitude for the KU Cancer Center and Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care. They helped her live as fully as possible after her cancer diagnosis, and they provided comfort and dignity through the end of her life.    

Anyone who knew Pat can picture the look that she’d give us if we tried to hold a memorial during a pandemic. When the time is right, her ashes will return to the ocean that she loved so much.

Memorial Contributions

Instead of flowers, to honor Pat, it is fitting to combine her love of college basketball with her fight against cancer – please donate to the V Foundation for Cancer Research ( in her honor.


  1. Terri White on April 7, 2021 at 1:40 pm

    I worked with Pat at Deffenbaugh Industries for many years & had many long talks with Pat as well as laughs. Pat’s advice always had that hint of spice in it & you could always expect her to give it to you straight. It was bitter sweet when she retired to the beach & I was deeply saddened to hear that she had returned to Kansas because her cancer had returned. I checked in with Pat early 2020 when the pandemic started & she had told me she was back in Kansas & would not be continuing her treatment. I did not know about her passing, but she has been on my mind a lot lately. I just decided to check the obits. So glad that I did. It brings some closure to know she has passed on to a better place & it no longer in pain. Rest in peace Pat. My prayers to her family & friends.

  2. Keith Stroker on December 29, 2020 at 11:25 am

    I just found out about Pat’s passing in December. I am so sorry she is gone and pray for her family in their transition. Pat was truly a wonderful co-worker and friend of mine at Deffenbaugh Industries in Kansas City. I remember several times talking with Ron Anderson, my boss and CFO at the time, how selfishly I wasn’t looking forward to Pat’s retirement, for her work product/ethic, but mostly because of my friendship with her and not being able to see her daily. She will truly be missed and my love and prayers go out to her family. God Bless you all!! Psalm 23.

  3. Ed Dasso on June 28, 2020 at 6:24 am

    Pat was a kind and thoughtful person. She cherished her family.
    I remember playing games with Pat. She embraced that competitive gene that the whole family inherited.
    Rest In Peace. We miss you.

  4. Fred Dasso on June 26, 2020 at 9:47 am

    This tribute to your mom is fantastic. “Became a cat person later in life” made me laugh hard. Skipping to the end of a book or movie is great. Why sit down for 2 hours when you get find out what happens in 15 minutes?

    Your mom was a special person. She may have been a disciplinarian with her kids but she was a easy going aunt. I think she found humor in hearing how her nephews & niece sometimes stressed out her sister.

    Love you Lisa, Karen, Lauren!
    Your favorite cousin, Fred

  5. Linda Dasso on June 25, 2020 at 6:06 pm

    Pat was my friend, my confident, my amigo and my sister. I certainly lucked out on that one.

    She was the older sister and without doubt the wiser sister. She was always there for me with her advice, her encouragement and her common sense.
    I don’t have the words to express how much I will miss her.

    I say goodbye now but only till we meet again.

  6. Michelle Dasso on June 25, 2020 at 5:48 pm

    What a perfectly well-written tribute. I will remember my Aunt with a big smile on her face, similar to the one in this picture. I was fortunate enough to grow even closer to my Aunt a few years back when she came to stay with me in Raleigh, NC when Hurricane Florence hit Kure Beach. I am thankful for that hurricane as I have so many great memories. We sipped quite a few Long Islands, listened to Jasmine meow endlessly, and laughed the time away. She was even brave enough to give me a few cooking lessons- unfortunately no one can live long enough to master this task! Pat always opened her home for me to visit Kure Beach anytime and even bought me surfing lessons when Evan and Tony were in town. Pat was very bright, witty, & smiled often- not a bad combo. She will be missed by the entire Dasso family.

  7. Kathy (Bastian) Sauer on June 19, 2020 at 11:37 am

    My sister and I grew up with Pat in Chicago. Our parents were very good friends. Rest in peace, Pat. Kathy (Bastian) Sauer

    • Lisa Lukaszewski on June 26, 2020 at 1:15 pm

      “The Bs,” as my grandparents and parents called them, were always part of our stories and memories. Thank you for your note.

  8. Lynnette Lawton on June 18, 2020 at 6:22 pm

    Oh “Sargent” Pat. When Lisa and Karen text me I instantly broke down into tears. I knew what was coming but you made a mark on my soul. Thank you for being such an amazing woman. I am so lucky to have gotten to be a part of you and your life maybe not in the way that we would’ve wanted. I do know now that you are no longer struggling. To all of her family I want you to know how grateful I am to have met Pat. Words cannot even express how grateful I am.What a truly wonderful woman and for me a game changer in my career

  9. Karen Lukaszewski on June 16, 2020 at 12:31 pm

    On behalf of the family, I want to thank you for coming to this page to remember Pat (the Spice). The support and encouragement we have experienced over this journey has been unparalleled. We miss her tremendously, and will miss her every day, but we’re so honored that she brought us together and allowed us to be a part of her life.

  10. Sara Smith on June 16, 2020 at 11:51 am

    A very special friend. We laughed a lot about silly things, walked along the beachfront on our morning walks, and drank a little vino now and then. I am fortunate to have known
    Pat during the last seven years.

  11. Rita Takahashi on June 16, 2020 at 10:46 am

    Dear Lisa, Karen, Diane, Evan, and Tony,
    There are no words. My heart is so sad. What a beautiful tribute for a beautiful woman. I’m remembering all the memories from you girls growing up to our visits to the beach the last few years. Such Bliss!!! Our long serious discussions and then we would bust out laughing. Of course we can’t forget the Tiki Bar! What a woman, what a mom, what a grandma, what a friend! She will always hold a very special place in my heart. My prayers are with you all. We are here if you ever need anything at all!

  12. Rebecca Takahashi on June 16, 2020 at 10:33 am

    Truly, truly one of the best. I managed to be her “daughter number one” for a few weeks on vacation several times. I will always think of her when I go to the beach. My memories of her will always make me smile.

  13. Lisa on June 16, 2020 at 9:28 am

    We miss you terribly, but we also realize how lucky we are to have had a mom, grandma, and mother-in-law we’ll miss this much. xoxoxo

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