Sunday, July 12, 2009

Uncle Bob 1935 - 2009


He was the first uncle on my father's side that I got to know. As a very young child I knew him as the uncle who smoked cigars, always carried a beer in his hand and like to laugh. He was always laughing. And when Dad and Uncle Bob went places we kids we're almost always included. Dad and Uncle Bob always went to much more interesting places than Dad went with Mom; we went to junkyards, auction sales, and other such places. My brother says that Uncle Bob was Dad's big brother and best friend and that's the truth.

He lived just down the road from us, about four doors down, so he also a neighbor when I was younger. As a teenager my father was frequently on the road because of his job. When I needed assistance that Dad would normally give I could almost always turn to Uncle Bob for that assistance.

He was a through and through redneck, (and keep in mind that I do not consider that an insult). I couldn't picture him in a 3-pc suit or eating lobster. He had a bumper sticker that said God Guns and Guts made America Free. Let's Keep All Three. He was a a shadetree mechanic like no other and was the "king of cobble" who could do more with Duct Tape, a can of WD40, and wooden mallet than most could do with a garage full of proper tools. (Needless to say his "hero" was Red Green. But unlike Red Green, Uncle Bob was practical and made it work.)

He was also a prankster and loved a practical joke. You had to be on guard at all times around him or something would happen and you'd hear his booming laughter. He was also a good sport on the recieving end too.

As he aged he drank and smoked less and less and, with his second wife, enjoyed life more or more, including frequent trips to Alaska and Canada. I accompanied him and Dad on a few trips to Canada and Northern Ontario is the only place to fish.

When Dad had his stroke Uncle Bob was devestated. Uncle Bob died suddenly and without warning of a heart attack. This is very hard on Dad.

Update 12/13 His eyes have already been transplanted into a woman, identity unknown. His bone marrow appears to be a match for someone needing it. (From my mother.) A large number of organs were removed and are being used by those in need. It is some comfort to know this.

13 Comments:

Blogger christian soldier said...

You really love (loved) him and - after reading your post- I can see why...
Again-Blessings and prayers to you and to your family ...
Carol-CS

1:52 PM  
Blogger Tom said...

My condolences. Sounds like the Uncle (or Father) we would all like to have had.

2:26 PM  
Blogger dmarks said...

Sorry for your loss.

And I am sorry we lost him from the voting booths (referring to that bumper sticker). We need more people like him.

4:14 PM  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

He had a bumper sticker that said God Guns and Guts made America Free. Let's Keep All Three. He was a a shadetree mechanic like no other and was the "king of cobble" who could do more with Duct Tape, a can of WD40, and wooden mallet than most could do with a garage full of proper tools.

Redneck or whatever, he sounds like my kind of American.

My sincerest condolences, Shoprat.

As we get older, we lose more and more people that we love.

7:36 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

It is a significant loss. We'll keep the family in our prayers.

8:55 PM  
Blogger Skip said...

Uncle Bob was an AWESOME man, he was brutally honest, et with a tact that I envy. He and our Dad were best friends for 70+ years, I never heard a cross word between them, to listen when he, Dad and UncleJim get together it is amazing they lived past 20. Yesterday was one the saddest day of my life to this point. Although Uncle Bob was an extremely important fixture in many peoples lives he was VERY much so to me as I was growing and learning, Dad was more "strict" where UB would let us do "dumb boy stuff" that our parents wouldn't and usually join right in. Yes I tasted my first beer with him and yes he gave me my first (and last) pinch of chew... then would laugh his a@# off at the results. I could go on and on but SR said it well.
We all will miss him
Skip

11:34 PM  
Blogger Z said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Shoprat and Skip; how wonderful that this loving, fun uncle will live on through your wonderful memories: God Guns and Guts..Uncle Bob was a true American! America will also miss him.

2:00 AM  
Blogger benning said...

Sorry to hear this, ES. Our prayers are with you and Dad.

Keep your chin up.

7:43 AM  
Blogger Bloviating Zeppelin said...

Wow, that's an AMAZING and WONDERful thing that he could help all those persons! Can you imagine what THEY must be saying about Uncle Bob right now -- ? Like an angel from above. . .

God bless your Uncle Bob.

So many good people that we know are passing.

BZ

6:28 PM  
Blogger shoprat said...

Thank you all of you for your prayers and good thoughts.

8:06 PM  
Blogger DirtCrashr said...

My sincere condolences and prayers.

1:41 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

You and your family have had many trials this year, I am sorry to hear about this sudden loss of your uncle. What a great tribute by you and Skip on the life of someone who meant a lot to you both.

10:37 PM  
Blogger Donald Douglas said...

Sorry to hear it, Shoprat. Those transplants are very cool.

I went to a family reunion on 4th of July, and a lot of family members seemed much older ...

Be well, friend.

12:25 AM  

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