Amanda Michelle Bennett passed away after a fierce two year battle with Triple Negative Metastatic Breast Cancer on April 29, 2019, at the age of 33. She was born on August 23, 1985, in Austin, Texas to Keith Bennett and Nikki Bartlett. She is survived by her father, Keith Bennett, of Smithville, Texas; her mother, Nikki Bartlett, and husband, John Bucklin, of Pflugerville, Texas; and her siblings, Alexis and Michael Robinson, also of Pflugerville, Texas. She is also survived by a close extended family including her maternal grandmother, Rita Eve and husband, Bob Eve, of Pflugerville, Texas; maternal grandfather, Christopher Bartlett, and wife, Pamela, of Ross-on-Wye, England, as well as numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins. She is preceded in death by her grandparents, Charles and Genevieve Bennett, and two cousins, Erin Jackson, and Manuel Gonzales.
Amanda spent most of her childhood in Cedar Park, Texas; she moved to Austin in 2001 and graduated from Anderson High School in 2003, where she enjoyed theater, dance, and worked in a movie theater. After graduation, she moved to Norfolk, Virginia, where she collected more friends and went to school. In 2013, Amanda returned to Texas and soon purchased her first home with her sister, which she loved decorating and making their own. Amanda worked as a Sales Manager with Marriott and loved her career in the hospitality industry. She was also an active member of the Global Business Travel Association and the West Austin Chamber of Commerce, where she excelled in networking and made many dear friends. She volunteered extensively with the West Austin Chamber of Commerce and helped plan and execute events for the organization. In January, she was awarded the West Austin Chamber of Commerce Chairman’s Award for her efforts in extending their mission.
Amanda was full of joy. Even on her hardest days, she’d be smiling and cracking jokes. She was sarcastic and clever. She loved hard and her beautiful personality was appreciated by many. She made friends everywhere she went, which is evident by her village of friends. Her friends were like family to her and she carved out time to keep them close, whether it was a weekly get together or keeping in touch via text with friends who lived out of state. She was a caretaker. She took care of everyone and was like a second mom to her brother and sister, lovingly nagging them about things like Michael going to school or making sure Lexi brought a sweater.
Her family will always remember her bubbly personality and how she could demand everyone’s attention; even when she was a little girl, she would stand in the middle of a room, spread her arms dramatically, and yell, “Everybody! Listen!” She loved family traditions and always wanted to make sure they were passed down from year to year. Christmas Eve was one of her favorites; playing games, having dinner together and drinking strawberry daiquiris. She made it a priority to attend every holiday and birthday celebration she could for all of her family and friends.
Amanda was a planner. She made lists upon lists, organized events, game nights and dinner parties. By far, her favorite thing to plan was vacations. She loved to travel and explore new places; she took some great trips, including trips as far away as England and Costa Rica. She visited various cities across the United States as well, but her favorite city to visit by far was New York. Her last trip there was extra special. She took in two Broadway shows, particularly loving one: Come From Away. She also ate one of the best meals of her life at a Michelin two-star restaurant during which she was given a tour of the kitchen and an introduction to the chef. At one point during the trip, as she grabbed a seat on the subway with a big smile on her face, she said, “I am so happy right now.”
Amanda enjoyed baking and in recent years took classes to learn a wide variety of baking techniques. She shared her skills by making creative and ornate cakes for birthday parties, showers, and holidays. She loved television and movies: Gilmore Girls, Harry Potter, and Breakfast at Tiffany’s were among her favorites that she watched tirelessly. Amanda was also an avid reader who had an affinity for both American novels and British authors.
Amanda’s life was cut short, but her imprint on this world is indelible. She will be greatly missed by so many people, which is a sign of the kind of person she was. She lived her life by one of her favorite quotes and would encourage others to do the same: “If you want to be happy, be.”