Bob passed away on April Fool’s Day in Jackson, CA at the age of 87 after a brief illness. He is survived by his six children, six grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, one great-great-grandchild and one great-great-grandchild on the way.
Born in Massena, NY in 1931, he had an adventurous childhood on the Saint Lawrence River. As a young man, he joined the Army and traveled through the United States testing artillery. He had many wild stories from his time in the service. He rode old Indian motorcycles and spent quality time across the border in Juarez, Mexico. The Army brought him to Northern California in the 1950s, where he put down roots. He raised three girls with his first wife Evelyn Vigness , and two sons and a daughter with second wife Kathie Sharples.
Bob was a legendary adventurer. Among his many talents, he was an expert pilot, motorcyclist, sky diver, abalone diver and excellent marksman. He excelled at taking calculated risks and taught his children how to be safe but still embrace life and enjoy what it has to offer.
Bob spent most of his life working in the printing industry as a salesman. He didn’t think of what he did as work. He absolutely loved people and couldn’t quite bring himself to retire until the age of 82. He once wrote in his diary: “People pay me money to go by every couple of weeks to say hi.”
He was the life of any party, and there are few who could match Bob’s mix of terrible jokes and hilarious stories. He loved life’s incongruities and tackled them with his unique sense of humor. One of his great talents was debate. He could discuss policy, social issues, science and governance with the best. Even if he didn’t agree, he would listen carefully with respect and a twinkle in his eye.
Bob’s many friends and family will miss him dearly, but we can point to his life as an example of a life well-lived, a model for how to be in this life we all share.
Donations can be made in his name to Hospice of Amador & Calaveras.
Services will be private.