Robert William Eiden, Sr . of Friendswood, TX died from natural causes on March 9, 2013 at the age of 90 years. He was born on a farm near Ceylon in St. Croix County, WI on July 16, 1922 to Susan Marie Waldbillig and Leo Adam Eiden.
On Sept 9, 1942 Robert enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He was deployed to England to serve with the Headquarters Squadron IX TCC, the 9th Air Force Troop Carrier Command which provided air transport for the Allied airborne divisions in the European Theater of Operations. He was an Administrative Specialist and attained the rank of Staff Sergeant. Robert received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Army on June 10, 1945 and was awarded the Good Conduct Ribbon, the European African Middle Eastern Theatre Ribbon with one Silver Battle Star, and five Overseas Service bars.
While stationed in England, Robert met his first wife, Edna Beatrice O'Loughlin. They were married in Mottingham, County Kent, England on August 12, 1944. After Robert's bride arrived in the United States in 1946, the couple settled in St. Paul, MN. He attended St. Paul Business School and was hired as a civilian employee of the U.S. Army at the Twin Cities Arsenal.
In late 1957, Robert was transferred to Huntsville, AL to work in the Contracts and Procurement Dept. of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency. ABMA would evolve into what is now known as NASA's George C. Marshall Space Flight Center. He remained with NASA through the Apollo missions, transferred to the Safeguard Program, a United States Army anti-ballistic missile system, and retired in 1977.
In September 1974 after 30 years of wedded bliss Robert was widowed. In the following months his sister reintroduced him to his high school sweetheart Monica Kathryn O'Hare. He and Monica were married on March 15, 1975. The couple moved to Friendswood, TX in 1999 to be closer to Robert's children. His second wife died after 38 years of wedded bliss and 17 days before his passing.
He was a 59-year member of the American Legion with his current membership being with American Legion South Houston Post 490 outside of Ellington Field in Houston, TX.
Robert was a parishioner of Mary Queen Catholic Church in Friendswood, TX and a member of the Mary Queen Seniors. He was involved with the Knights of Columbus, Huntsville Council #4080, from 1960 until his move to Texas when he transferred his membership to Friendswood Council #8494. He was a Knight of the 4th Degree and carried an honorary lifetime membership.
Robert William Eiden, Sr. is pre-deceased in death by his parents, his two wives, his younger sister, Virginia Ann Mahr, and a granddaughter, Jennifer Lynn Ming.
He is survived by his sister, Dolores Kelly, his son Robert William Eiden, Jr., his daughter, Colette Ming and her husband Leslie, four grandchildren, Jacqueline, Theresa, Quintina and Christopher, one great-grandson, Anthony, and nieces and nephews.
Friends are cordially invited to the visitation with the family on Monday, April 1, 2013 from 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. with the rosary vigil beginning at 7:00 P.M. at the Jeter Memorial Funeral Home Chapel, 311 N. Friendswood Dr., Friendswood, TX. 77546 (281) 992-7200 with Rev. Benny Thadathilkunnel, M.S.
A Memorial Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at 10:00 A.M. at Mary Queen Catholic Church, 606 Cedarwood, Friendswood, TX with Rev. James H. Kuczynski.M.S. officiating. Interment will be held at a later date at the Houston National Cemetery in Houston, TX.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that a donation be made in his memory to the
Condolences may be sent to the Eiden Family in care of Jeter Memorial Funeral Home at www.jeterfuneralhome.com.
Published in Houston Chronicle on Mar. 24, 2013