Robert K. Shields(1927 - 2013)

Robert K. Shields


Robert K. Shields 85 years, longtime resident of Ankeny, Iowa peacefully passed from this life on 26 March 2013, at the Sunny View Care Center in Ankeny from complications associated with a stroke. Visitation will be at Hamilton's near Highland Memory Gardens, 121 NW 60th Avenue in Des Moines, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, 30 March 2013 with funeral services beginning at 12 p.m. Interment will be at Highland Memory Gardens with military honors. A lunch will be served following services to all wishing to join in the celebration of this dear man's life.

Bob was the 2nd son of Harry and Eathel Shields born in Murray, IA on August 4th 1927. Bob spent his entire youth in the Murray area and joined the Army Air Corps in World War II. He proudly served as an engine mechanic on the B-29 Superfortress until the War's end.

After the War he was united in marriage to his beloved Carolyn Rose on June 29th 1946 and shortly thereafter moved to the Des Moines area to begin their family. Bob began his professional career at Solar Aircraft in Des Moines as a tool designer and from there went to the John Deere Des Moines Works as a Tool and Die Maker. His expertise, organizational skills and endearing personality helped him rise through the supervisory ranks and after 31 years retired in 1982 as the factory Safety Director.

Bob was a devoted husband of over 65 years, an active father of three, and lived a full and independent life, always committed to his family. He enjoyed boating, water skiing and camping throughout his life and owned many pleasure craft of all sizes ~ most bearing the name of his daughter: Becky Ann. Bob and Carolyn's last vessel was a large houseboat they kept moored at the Saylorville Marina for several years and was enjoyed by the entire family. He was always keen for adventure which often challenged him to keep up with his sons whether mushroom and pheasant hunting, waterskiing, or trail riding and hill climbing on their motorcycles - what a time he had!

During his long retirement he and Carolyn enjoyed traveling and especially to Toy Tractor Shows where they made many close friends. Bob's perfectionism and skill as a tool maker served him well in this hobby as he built and refurbished countless numbers of toy tractors to the admiration and envy of collectors throughout the Midwest. When he committed himself to a project, he always put the full strength of his considerable talents to the task. As a perfectionist he always kept his cars and John Deere Tractors in show-room condition- no matter the season. He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather and always devoted to his family.

Those left to honor and cherish his memory include his wife Carolyn Rose and their children; Gary Robert and wife Mary (Indianola, IA); John Steven and wife Lynda (Earlham, IA); and Rebecca Ann and husband Brad Heckman (Kansas City, MO). Also surviving are his grandchildren, Michael and Erin (Nestor) Tarango (Gary); Jeff and Kim (Chad) Mease (John); Daniel and Shelby (Rebecca); two great-granddaughters, Addison (Kimi) and Hannah Rose (Erin); his sister, Marge and husband Dick Moberly. He is fondly remembered by his many friends in the community and all across the Midwest. He was preceded in death by his brother, Richard.

The family wishes to profoundly thank the staff of Sunny View Care Center in Ankeny for the compassionate and loving care they provided. Online remembrances and condolences may be expressed to the family by visiting Bob's obituary at

Funeral Home

Hamilton's Funeral Home
121 NW 60th Avenue Des Moines, IA 50313
(515) 289-2442

Published in Des Moines Register from Mar. 28 to Mar. 30, 2013