Robert (Bob) Tracy Williams|
Robert (Bob) Tracy Williams, 83 years old, of Superior, Wisconsin, and Marysville, California, passed away, Thursday, June 6, 2013, in the comfort of his own home, in Marysville, with his loving wife at his side.
Bob was born on August 17, 1929, in Superior, Wisconsin, the only child of Cecil and Lillian Williams. He attended parochial schools in Superior, and earned his teaching certificate and a degree in mathematics in Superior. During the Korean conflict, Bob entered the Navy in 1952 and received an honorable discharge after two years of service. He then returned to the Wisconsin College of Mining in Platteville where he earned his engineering degree. While completing this rigorous education program, Bob began what was to become his career, civil engineering for the state department of highways.
While growing up in Wisconsin, he followed in his father's footsteps and nurtured his passion for the outdoors. His family cannot think of Bob without remembering him as an avid hunter and fisherman. After one successful hunting trip, Bob and his friend were deciding what to do with the day's haul. It was settled to take the game to his friend's girlfriend's house and have her sister cook it for them. It was there that Bob became enamored with the big brown eyes of the sister, Loretta Kunz. Shortly thereafter, he married Loretta on December 26, 1957 in Platteville at a Mass officiated by her brother, Rev. Fr. Alfred Kunz.
After accepting a job offer from the California State Department of Highways (Caltrans), Bob and his new bride moved to California in 1958. They lived in Fresno and then Bakersfield, where he worked on the new I-5 freeway from Bakersfield to the Grapevine, and finally settled in Marysville, California, where they have remained for 48 years.
Although Bob was a successful engineer, his true life's work was his family. He was "Daddy" to seven daughters, and actively supported all of his children's activities. Bob and Loretta instilled in them the importance of family and the Catholic faith as well as a love of learning and the importance of completing their education. The family fondly remembers the regular trips to Wisconsin to visit their grandparents and many aunts, uncles and cousins, and the many camping trips along the way where they visited the nation's beautiful state and national parks. For many years, he was an active member of the Rod and Gun Club and the Elks Club, and frequently won the prize for the most daughters brought to the annual Father-Daughter dinner.
After retirement from a 30-year career at Caltrans, Bob completed work on a beautiful cabin that he designed, and with the help of Loretta and other family members, built at Lake Madrone. There he created countless memories throughout the years with Loretta and their ever-growing family, who treasure the life-stories, life-lessons, fishing and canoeing on the lake, corny jokes he shared, as well as the way he kept them humble by skunking them all at cribbage. The family patriarch will be dearly remembered and missed.
Bob has been preceded in death by his daughter Donna Neuerburg, and is survived by Loretta, his beloved wife of 55 years, and daughters Belinda (Gordon) Wulke, Katherine (Chip) Guthrie, Patricia (Michael) Scott, Paula (Conrad) Jenssen, Mary (Stephen) Garrett, and Tracy (Tim) Williams, son-in-law Kent Neuerburg, twenty-one grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.
Friends will be received Friday, June 14, 2013, from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm, at Lipp and Sullivan, 629 D Street, Marysville. The Rosary will commence immediately following the Friday visitation. The Mass of Christian Burial will be officiated by Rev. Fr. Godwin Xavier on Saturday, June 15 at 10:00am at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 7th and C Streets, Marysville, followed by interment at Sutter Cemetery in Sutter, California.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made either to the Southeastern Foundation, SLU 10703, Hammond, LA 70402, dedicated to "The Donna Neuerburg Endowed Scholarship" in honor of Bob's daughter Donna, or for the education of priests and religious to the Pontifical College Josephinum, 7625 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43235, dedicated to "The Robert Williams Scholarship Fund."
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Published in Appeal Democrat from June 12 to June 13, 2013