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Robert Theodore "Bob" Stelloh

Obituary Condolences

HENDERSONVILLE-Robert "Bob" Theodore Stelloh, of Hendersonville died peacefully in his sleep at home July 15th, 2014, after a long battle against cancer. He was four days short of his 80th birthday. He is remembered by his friends and family as a gentle, thoughtful, wise and gracious man.
The youngest of four children of Reynold and Genevieve (nee Myers) Stelloh, Bob was born and raised in Saint Louis, Missouri. In high school he was a competitive bicycle racer and won the Missouri State Championship. He enlisted in the US Army at the age of 19 and served during the Korean War as a surveyor. Afterward, he received Bachelor's and Master's degrees at the Missouri School of Mines, now Missouri S&T, whereupon he became fascinated with the nascent field of computer science. After graduation, Bob moved to California to work for Lockheed as a Computer Engineer. In 1968, he co-founded International Computing Company and eventually moved to Bethesda, Maryland where he and his colleagues developed high throughput transaction processing and tracking systems for customers such as NYC off-track betting, Dow Jones, NASDAQ, the Milwaukee Blood Bank, and the US Passport Office. After ICC was acquired by Contel in 1981, Bob served as Director of the Rockville MD office until he retired in 1996.
Bob's first marriage, in 1956 to Marjorie Rose Steinbrueck, ended in divorce. Denise Margaret Harang Stratton, whom he wed in 1970, passed away in 2008 after 38 years of marriage. In 2010, Bob met and married Audrey Lash Alexander.
When Bob retired, he moved to Hendersonville, North Carolina where he pursued his passion for gardening, especially his love of azaleas and rhododendrons. The Stelloh Garden is his legacy, a work of art featuring over 1000 different azalea cultivars. He mapped his garden beds and tracked precise plant locations and detailed plant descriptions using a computer program he developed and named "Garden Information Manager". GIM was purchased and is used by several Arboretums and Botanic Gardens including the Lewis Ginter Garden in Richmond VA. The Stelloh Garden has been featured on numerous national and local garden tours, during which visitors couldn't help but appreciate Bob's genuine, friendly spirit, his keen interest in sharing garden knowledge and experiences, and his overall love of life.
Bob was an extremely ardent member of the Azalea Society of America. He designed and managed the Azalea Society website for 15 years, served as Treasurer for 10 years, and was co-founder of the local Azalea Society chapter, where he served as treasurer. Another of his legacies is the photographing and cataloging of 1000's of different azaleas at www.pbase.com/azaleasociety.
In addition to his parents, Bob's sister, Dot Stelloh Belko, predeceased him, as did his children Kathleen Denise Stelloh Graham, Paul Alexander Stelloh, and Thomas Edward Stelloh. Bob is survived by his wife, Audrey Lash Stelloh; daughter Jennifer Marie Stelloh of Takoma Park, Maryland; and step-daughter Michelle Stratton of Santa Ana, California. Additionally, he is survived by his older siblings, Ren Stelloh, Jr. of Solomons, Maryland; and Marty Stelloh Weber Spiro and her husband, Dan, of Mesa, Arizona, as well as a host of nieces and nephews.
Condolences to the family can be made at www.ashevillemortuaryservices.com.
Published in The Times-News on July 22, 2014
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