Bob Holloway, 85, passed gently away in his sleep at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital on Dec. 28, 2009, after a four-month battle with lung cancer.
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Bob was born to Fred and Ruth Holloway on June 15, 1924, in Mitchell, Neb. A sister, Dorothy, was born on June 29, 1946.
Bob's father was a consummate salesman who excelled in selling everything from new cars to lumber. Because of the Depression, work was hard to find, and the Holloway family moved many times during the '20s and '30s. During Bob's childhood, the family lived in towns throughout Colorado, but they moved to southern California in the late 1930s. Bob went to 14 different schools before graduating from high school. Despite the family's many moves, Bob was so outgoing that he easily made new friends wherever he lived. He was always active in student government, and was elected president of his senior class at El Monte Union High School, El Monte, Calif., even though he'd only transferred there the previous year.
In 1943, after graduating from high school, Bob enlisted in the Army Air Corps and spent most of his time in the service as a military policeman stationed at Kelly Field in San Antonio, Texas. Soon after his discharge from the military, in September 1946, he met his future wife, Phyllis Sipfle, at a Labor Day party hosted by his aunt and uncle. Although he asked her to marry him after just a few dates, Phyllis made him wait two years, and they were finally wed on May 27, 1948, in Westwood Village, Calif.
Bob started his professional career as a mechanical draftsman for the telephone company. Starting in the 1950s and continuing for the rest of his career, Bob worked for several major defense contractors in the Los Angeles area. Although he never attended college, Bob worked his way up from draftsman to design engineer on the basis of hard work, natural talent and sheer determination. Bob continued to work in the engineering field until his retirement in 1990.
Bob and Phyllis bought their first house in the San Fernando Valley northwest of Los Angeles in 1950. Their daughter, Carleen, was born on Feb. 12, 1953, and their son, Jeff, was born on Sept. 26, 1955. Bob and Phyllis continued to live in southern California until 1992, when they moved to Bozeman, where Jeff and his family were already living. They built a house on the south side of Bozeman, where Bob designed the perfect woodshop in his garage. Over the next 17 years, Bob expanded his circle of friends to include many people throughout Bozeman and the Gallatin Valley.
Bob and Phyllis loved living in Montana. Together, they enjoyed antiquing, shopping Downtown, and exploring backroads, museums and communities throughout the state.
Phyllis passed away in March 2005. Six months later, Bob moved to Aspen Pointe at Hillcrest to begin the next chapter in his long life. Bob made many friends at Hillcrest, including in particular his next-door neighbor, close friend and companion, Claudine McGowan. Filled with a lifetime's accumulation of books, artwork and his miniature bottle collection, Bob's apartment "museum" became known throughout Hillcrest as a not-to-be-missed attraction.
Bob is survived by his sister, Dorothy (Lloyd) Claprood of Banning, Calif.; daughter, Carleen Holloway and granddaughter, Gwenna Achuff of Denver, Colo.; son, Jeff (Nancy) Holloway of Bozeman; and granddaughters, Kate and Sara Holloway, also of Bozeman.
Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at Dokkken-Nelson Sunset Chapel, with interment following in Sunset Hills Cemetery. A reception to celebrate Bob's life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9, at Aspen Pointe.
Memorials may be made in Bob's honor to Bozeman-Deaconess Hospice, 931 Highland Blvd. Suite 3200, Bozeman, MT 59715; or to Heart of the Valley Animal Shelter, P.O. Box 11390, Bozeman, MT 59719.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service; www.dokkennelson.com.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Dec. 30, 2009