Hall of Fame - Huelet (Joe) Benner

 Joe Benner

Date of BirthNovember 1, 1917

Hometown: Paragould, Arkansas

Events: 50M Pistol

Personal: Joe Benner was born in rural Arkansas, and developed an early love for fine guns through his grandfather, an avid sportsman.  His first interest in match shooting developed after joining the U.S. Army in 1935. Benner's first major tournament was the South Atlantic Matches in Savannah, Georgia. His sucess bolstered the incentive to continue marksmanship.

During the years 1940-1951, Benner was the Weapons Instructor at the Armored School in Fort Knox, Kentucky. He taught marksmanship to thousands of Officer Candidates with all guns, small arms to tank size. During this time, World War II erupted and caused a halt in many of the matches.

In 1964, Benner retired as a Sgt. Major having more than 28 years of service. After retirement, he accepted the position as Director of Shooting Education with High Standard Firearms, and moved to Tampa, Florida. After this, Benner started his own business, Joe Benner Security Equipment. He sold guns, leather, and ammunitions and imported some of the first international style firearms - the Sauer drilling and the Feinwerkbau air pistol.

In his personal time, Benner enjoyed hunting and participating in all shooting aspects. 

Competition Highlights

  • 1952 Olympic Games - Gold, Slow-Fire Free Pistol
  • 1948 Olympic Games - Second Certificate, Slow-Fire Free Pistol
  • 1956 Olympic Games - Participated, Slow-Fire Free Pistol
  • 1949 World Championships - Gold Medal, Slow-Fire Free Pistol
  • 1952 World Championships - Gold Medal, Rapid-Fire Pistol
  • 1954 World Championships - Participant, Rapid-Fire Pistol
  • 1950 Pan-American Games - Gold Medal, Rapid-Fire Pistol
  • 1955 Pan-American Games - Gold Medal, Individual & Team
  • Six time National Pistol Match Champion - 1947, 1949, 1951, 1954, 1955, 1959
  • 1947 National Trophy Individual Service Champion
  • Two Individual World Records and Two Team World Records


U.S. Distinguished International Shooter Badge


National Shooting Sports Foundation