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ROBERT E. HAYES Sr. Obituary
Robert E. Hayes, Sr., 89, of Independence, MO passed away Tuesday, June 17, 2014. A prayer service and open sharing night will be held from 6:00-800 p.m. Monday, June 23, at Speaks Suburban Chapel. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, June 24 at St. Mark's Catholic Church. Burial will be at Johnson County Memorial Gardens. A hero has left us. Robert Evans Hayes, Sr., 89, World War II veteran, devoted husband, dedicated father, loving grandfather and adoring Old Papa passed away Tuesday, June 17, 2014. Robert was a lover of travel, small children, big dogs, all animals, most people, popcorn, root beer balls, and fudge. Those who knew him called him by many names. His coworkers at Missouri Gas Energy dubbed him "Gabby Hayes" because in the 30 plus years he worked there he never met a stranger. The Boy Scouts in Troop 178 knew him by his Mic-O- Say tribal name, "Old Limping Buzzard." To the children at Nativity of Mary where he was a member of the parish and school family for over 30 years, he was known as "Grandpa" to one and all. Later in life a fluffy white beard earned him the name, "the Gnome" which friends and family lovingly continued to use until the end. And finally, his great grandchildren were the last to rename him; to them, he will always be "Old Papa." After years of driving her around on the handlebars of his bicycle, Robert married his childhood sweetheart Betty Flo on September 16th 1943, the same day he left for service in World War II. A member of the Army Air Corps, Robert served his country in the belly of a B-17 Bomber as the ball turret gunner. When he returned home from England, he put the war behind him and focused on raising his family with Betty; whom he was married to for 57 years before her death in May of 2000. Together they had two children, Robert Evans Jr and Linda Kay. As a family they enjoyed fishing at their lake home, long Sunday drives, drive-in-movies and root beer floats. Times were hard, but Robert never let his family go without. He moonlighted successfully as a taxi driver, cook, butcher and bartender but failed miserably as a wallpaper hanger. His family grew when Robert Jr married Margaret Brayton and Linda married Richard Huber. He reveled in the births of each of his grandchildren. Annie (Brian) Williams, Korene (Mark) Ekstrand, Robert Matthew Huber, Rachel (Ryan) Robinson, Kristen Perkins and Thomas (Nicki) Hall Jr. When the time came for him to become a great- grandfather, he did so with unabashed delight. His Great- Grandchildren are: Ethan and Kyle Williams; Luke, Wesley, and Emeri Ekstrand; Kaitlin, Tyler, Garrett and Nelise Robinson; Bailey and Jacie Whiting; Hope and Jacob Augustin. He was blessed to find love again with his second wife, Patricia. Together they had three border collie children: Daisy, Truman and Lou. Pat and Robert traveled extensively, prayed fervently, laughed loud and long, and loved each other devotedly. Pat became Nana to Robert's grandchildren and great-grandchil- children alike and to the Gnome she became his lovely Gnomess. The family would like to express their appreciation to all the people that made Robert's life so much fuller: Fr. Jim Taranto, whose spiritual guidance was rich with humor and friendship; Dr. Carnie Nulton, his long-time physician and friend; all the staff at Saint Luke's East Hospital, most recently his loving ICU nurses, Amy, Jenna, and Jana; Chaplain Leslie; social workers Deloris and Nicole who made his transition to Saint Luke's Hospice House seamless; his hospice nurse Erin who guided his grieving family during his last moments of life; medical assistant Holly whose tender care will never be forgotten; and finally his guardian angel, Gloria Solis, who made sure he had everything he ever needed. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to KC Pet Project at 4400 Raytown Road, Kansas City, MO 64129. Online condolences may be expressed at www.speakschapel.com (Arrangements: Speaks Suburban Chapel 816-373-3600)S
Published in Kansas City Star on June 22, 2014
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