Robert Joseph Kulsik
May 7, 1935-March 28, 2013
Resident of Yountville, CA
Robert Joseph Kulsik, 77 years of age, passed away peacefully at the Veterans Home in Yountville, CA on March 28, 2013. He was born May 7, 1935 in Philadelphia, PA to John and Anna Kulsik. He attended West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Boys where he was an honors student. He served in the US Army
and trained as a paratrooper for the 82nd Airborne at Fort Bragg, NC. He graduated from Indiana Institute of Technology in Fort Wayne, IN with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering.
He relocated to California with his young family in 1961 to the Sacramento area and later the East Bay, where he was employed as an aeronautical engineer in the aerospace industry. Living in Berkeley in the 1970's, he designed backpacking tents for North Face and Sierra Designs. He later founded Clear Creek, a backpacking company based in San Leandro. His state-of-the-art Ogive tent design was world renowned, and its claim to fame as the world's strongest tent. One of his most popular Ogive models was the Starry Night, named after his favorite painter Vincent van Gogh's masterpiece painting.
Ever since his scouting days as a youth, he loved nature and the outdoors and was an avid backpacker, rock climber and marathon runner. He enjoyed taking his children Laura and Jim camping, hiking and cross-country skiing in Yosemite and Sequoia National Park. His passion for hoagies and his hometown Philadelphia cheese steaks was well known among family and friends.
He was a Renaissance man of sorts, interested in spirituality, world religions, fine art, architecture, literature, politics, music and sports. He met and studied with the Dalai Lama in Nepal in the early 1990's. Also during that time, he did volunteer work at Mother Teresa's House For The Destitute and Dying in Calcutta, India, which brought him closer to his Catholic upbringing. He had an eclectic taste in music, which ranged from Mahler and Muddy Waters to Gordon Lightfoot and Jimi Hendrix. He spoke three languages and was immensely proud of his Polish and Lithuanian heritage, and recently traveled to Poland where he tracked down long lost relatives.
In his retirement years, he spent much time in Catalonia, Spain. While in his late 60's and early 70's, he walked the Camino de Santiago five times, a 500 mile Pilgrimage along the French and Spanish borders.
Robert is survived by his daughter Laura Kulsik Yasso of Center Valley, PA, son Jim Kulsik of Hayward, CA, brother Jack Kulsik of Springfield, PA, and many nieces and nephews who loved him dearly. He was preceded in death by his parents John and Anna Kulsik of Philadelphia, PA and his sister Eleanore Horning of Warminster, PA.
A memorial service will be held on April 11th at 10am at the Veterans Home Chapel in Yountville. 100 California Dr. Yountville, CA.