November 13, 1950 ~ January 3, 2020

Born in: Lubbock, TX
Resided in: Denver, CO

Julius Benford Jr. lovingly called “Bo” or “Jabo” by family and friends, was born in Lubbock Texas on November 13, 1950, to parents Julius Benford Sr. and Annie Bell Thomas. Julius was the second oldest of four brothers and two sisters. brothers; “Sonny”, IV, Larry and Michael; sisters Diane and Charlene. His siblings can go on and on with stories about how their brother was always there for them and had a heart as big as Texas. Throughout his life Julius always displayed his big heart and loving disposition to all.

In 1954, Julius and his parents moved from Lubbock Texas to Denver Colorado. There he matriculated through the Denver Public School system, Julius was loved by his teachers and classmates and there is where he found his talent as an exceptional athlete. In elementary and junior high school Julius developed solid friendships with Harold Mason, Raymond Fair, Donald Bell and Sam Moore that would grow far beyond adulthood. Julius often found solace in playing basketball on the blacktop at any neighborhood park or school. One may even have found “Jabo” playing at a local rec center with his buddys. As a boy growing up in northeast Denver Julius often had aspirations to bring his community together through athletics. Something that would come to flourishion later in his life. He would tell his son how much the Civil Rights movement affected him and how he always wanted to be a change agent like Malcom and Martin, but he would use athletics to do so.

As Julius grew into adolescence he began to grow into his own. In 1966, Julius began his secondary education at Manual High School. There he played JV basketball under Denver Legend Ed Calloway. Even though Julius’ basketball dreams ended after his Junior year that didn’t stop him from continuing to open his heart and build amazing friendships with is Thunderbolt classmates. After graduating in 1969, Julius set his sights on college, so the fall of 69’ Julius enrolled at Trinidad State Junior College. There he was able to rekindle his love of basketball again. Julius graduated from Trinidad State Junior College with an Associate of Arts degree.

After graduating from college Julius moved back to Denver where he returned to his beloved alma mater Manual. There he worked security. Students there were able to see first hand how big his heart was. The students there quickly drew to Julius and he was more than willing to be a big brother, uncle or even father figure to those students. Julius left Manual to take an Assistant Athletic Director position around the corner at Red Shield Community Center, another place he planted roots early in his life.
At Red Shield Julius began to realize his ministry as a coach. There he developed his skills and really began to pour into some amazing young men and women. With the blessing of Tony Sandoval, Julius was able to be promoted to Athletic Director for the Rec Center full time. His tenure there was well over twenty years. During that time he developed the Mile High Pro-Am basketball tournament where Pro’s from the Denver Nuggets, Utah Jazz, Houston Rockets and New York Knicks played alongside some of Denver’s best local talent. Julius also created the annual Martin Luther King Jr. basketball tournament where youth teams from all over the state and country participated in over the MLK Weekend. Julius also held the position of Assistant Head Basketball Coach at Mullen High School. There he was blessed with the opportunity to see several of his players graduate into Division I programs across the country.

During this time of his life Julius was blessed to be a father, Garrett Green who was five and then soon after Julius III. Julius was later blessed with a daughter Whitney Cooper. Julius loved being a dad, the enormous love he had for his children was never in question and was undeniable by his kids. His favorite phrase for his boys growing up was, “I’ll never make a difference between you and I’ll always treat you the same.” Julius was able to find a way to make his children feel like there was no difference between them. He also was able to make every child he coached feel the same. Julius took the opportunity to help develop his sons basketball skills and grew that into a very fulfilling coaching career. For over twenty years Julius believed that working with children was truly his call to ministry.

Henderson, Hill, Wortham, Green, Teel, Moore, Fair, Mason, Christian, Harris, Bell, Sproling, Buckman, Carey, Price, Jones, Wilson are just a few of the families Julius touched throughout his life. There wasn’t a time where Julius missed an opportunity help the homeless or speak to someone who needed uplift.

Julius, later in life married Ms. Julia Childs. Julie recalls falling in love with Julius when he was eight years old while seeing him play basketball on the playground in their neighborhood. On March 30, 2018 Julius and Julie made it official and become husband and wife in front of family and friends. They become inseparable until Julius’ end days. Julius talked about how strong his faith had become over the last five years. With his wife Julie’s help he was at piece in his last days knowing he was going to see The King. Julius loved Julie through his good days and bad, sickness and health and until they were departed.

Julius was particular about the way he ate. He’d spend several minutes prepping his food before he ate. He hated for his food to touch, he liked taking naps, he ate dessert before his entree, Julius’ mantra was to walk softly and carry a big stick. He also knew about speaking loud so you can be heard. Julius exemplified manhood. He stood with his head held high. Julius showed strength and humility in everything that he did. He loved hard on those around and in his circle. He made sure to let those he was close to know how much he cared and loved them.

Julius’ gap tooth smile and infectious laugh will be greatly missed by all that were blessed to know him.

Julius was preceded in death by his parents, Julius and Annie Benford; his brother Tommy Lee “Sonny” Mathews; sister Diane Watson; and son Garrett Green.

Julius Benford Jr. was called home in the early morning of Friday January 3, 2020. We all loved him but God loved him best. Julius left behind in this life to cherish his memory his wife: Julia Childs-Benford, his children; Julius (Nicole) Benford III and Whitney Cooper. His siblings IV (Ernestine) Benford Sr., Larry (Kimberly) Benford, Michael Benford, Charlene (Doyle) Slay, devoted brother and sisters Richard Watson, Maudette Packer and Linda Brown, nieces and nephews; Carlos Mathews, Terry Earvin, IV (Denise) Benford Jr., Larran (Christyl) Benford, Kelan Michael Benford, LaKisha Benford, Nikki Watson, Brittany Benford and Lawon Benford, grand-children: Ryan, Tyler, Brooklyn, Brianna, Nia, Justin, Morgan, Jordan, Mateo, and Gino. A host of great-nieces and nephews, cousins, many other close family and friends, and of course his beloved Manual High School Alumni T’Bolt Nation


Visitation: January 10, 2020 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Pipkin Braswell
6601 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80220

Celebration of Life: January 11, 2020 10:00 am

Central Baptist Church
2400 California Street
Denver, CO 80205

Interment: January 11, 2020 2:00 pm

Fairmount Cemetery
430 South Quebec Street
Denver, CO 80231

Reception: January 11, 2020 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Central Baptist Church
2400 California Street
Denver, CO 80205

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    • I go such a long way back with this family if you need anything don’t hesitate to call me I will be there . Love you all

  1. I am so sorry to learn of another Benford family member’s passing, the family has been dear to my heart ,since they were children, God Bless the family, Rest In Peace ,Old Friend.

  2. My condolences to the Benford family. Julius is a handsome and nice man. He personality was so mellow. Rest in heaven great man.

  3. My condolence go to the Benford family my heart is so broken Julius is going to be greatly missed he’s like an uncle I’ve never had he was always sweet and nice giving out hugs and kisses truly going to miss you🙏🏾💞🙏🏾❤❤❤❤

  4. My condolence to the bin for family Julius is going to be greatly missed I’m going to miss his smile and his hugs RIHEAVEN 😇 RIP 🙏🏾💞🙏🏾

  5. My condolence go to the Benford family my heart is so broken Julius is a great person very nice and sweet to be around I’m truly going to miss you RIHEAVEN 😇 RIP 🙏🏾💞🙏🏾❤❤❤❤

  6. My condolence going out to the Benford family my heart is so broken Julius is a great person very nice and sweet to be around I’m truly going to miss you RIHEAVEN 😇 RIP 🙏🏾💞🙏🏾❤❤❤❤

  7. Jabo knows how I felt about him and he took it with him with that being said I send out my heartfelt condolences to his wife kids and the rest of the Benford & the entire family may Jehovah’s blessings be with y’all much love I’ll holla

  8. When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure
    With caring thoughts and love. RIH JaBo

  9. To the Benford family, I was very sorry to hear of your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Jesus Christ will see you all through this time of sorrow. I am here for any and all of you for whatever you may need. Love Forever

  10. Larry, our deepest condolences to you and your family in the loss of your brother, Julius (Jabo). I remember him from the time I was a kid at the Red Shield. May God bless you, Kim and the rest of your family during this difficult time.

  11. Coach Julius was a great man to many of us that went thru the Red Shield. Thanks for soooooooo much Coach Julius. Rest easy

  12. On Behalf of the Steel family we send Condolences may the Lord continue to watch over the family now and always.

    Deaconess Alice Steel
    Debra Griffie
    Alison Steel

  13. As in-laws to our beloved children, I had known Julius to be a wonderful person and Grandfather. I pray for the family left behind and that we will all meet up in the end and be together in His glorious kingdom. Much love and prayers.

  14. Julia
    My deepest sympathies to you and your family. May Julius RIP. Keep leaning on the Lord for strength and comfort through this difficult time. Love Peace
    Erma Marshall Sheila Mingo
    Kappa Tower

  15. Jabo, was always encouraging, engaging and caring. He was coach, big brother, a friend and family. A strong cornerstone of Manual T-Bolts Alumni Nation.
    That infectious smile and loving deamour was real and heartfelt. RIH Jabo. I /we will miss you. Love you man

  16. I know he will be missed. He had an awesome personality that will also be missed. But God has him because he knows Him. God bless you all.

  17. Right now, when your loss is so fresh, it may be difficult for you to image that this pain will ever go away. But in time the blessing of God’s unfailing grace will soften the hurt that your feeling and bring your heart peace, comfort and hope that it needs to heal. Please remember we are lifting you up in prayer. He was a scholar of a man.
    The BUCKMON family

  18. Larry, Michael and family condolences on Jabo’s passing. Our families go a long way back and I know that this is difficult, everyone is so close
    Hang in there my ‘brothers’ God has us covered. Take one day at a time. Mich Love

  19. To the Benford Family, No words can convey the heartbreak I am feeling on the passing of Jabo. I have so many memories of him and Rickey running together. You all are my Family as well and I’m hurting for you all. As long as I can remember, the Benford’s have been in my life. I Love you all and am keeping you in Prayer, and sending Sincerest Condolences to you all from the Reynolds Family! May God Give you the Strength to carry on. Love ❤️ you all! Lori Reynolds

  20. May God be with this family. My condolences to the Benford Family. Remember to never let go of Gods unchanging hands.

  21. Coach Julius you taught me the fundamentals of the gameat a young age which carried me through college. You took us to a nationally ranked team at Redshield those days were great and never forgotten. A great man in my eyes for sure, you will be truly missed Coach. God bless you

  22. May you rest in peace Jabo and may God bless his family and loved ones and give them strength at this time. Robinson family

  23. Giving Honor to God, giving Him all the Praise for giving us Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior that we may have a path to His kingdom and have eternal life. The family is saddened to hear the news concerning your Husband and Dad Julius Benford Jr lovingly called “Jabo”.
    We share some of the pain and grief that confront you today, but only your immediate family understands the pain you endure now and for a lifetime. We know the space Julius shared in your heart and mind will never be fill, but through the sharing of your time with family and friends reminiscing the special moments and interaction you had will soften some of the pain.
    As witness by family, friends and others, you will take this moment in your life to God and he will take you through these times. We know God will give you and the family the comfort you require. “Remember God will not give us more than we can bear”, if He will take us to it, He will take us through it. God has a purpose for Julius beyond out knowledge and comprehension; he has passed into sleep, a journey for all mankind and a step closer to God.
    I send you a passage that give me such strength in my time of need and found in 1st Thessalonians, 4 chapters, vs. 13-18.
    [13] But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
    [14] For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
    [15] For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
    [16] For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
    [17] Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
    [18] Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
    May God bless your family to overcome this sorrow and hold you in his arms and comfort your pain. I pray you and the family fine peace and always remember the joy Julius brought into your life and those around him.
    On behalf of the family and friends worldwide, our deepest sympathy goes out to you.
    “Julius” presents will truly be missed in his community and our hearts, but not forgotten.”
    Ted and Diane Wortham-Moore

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