A beloved son, husband, father and grandfather, Bob Piser, 65, died Feb. 20, 2014, at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital, with his family by his side after a decade-long battle with prostate cancer proved too much.|
Robert Alan Piser was born Jan. 3, 1949, to Robert and Ruth Piser at Mary Immaculate Hospital in Queens, N.Y., Bob spent his childhood years in Queens and Levittown, Long Island, before the family moved to Towson, Md., as he was entering junior high school.
After graduating from Hereford High School in 1967, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1968. During 23 years of service as a radio operator, maintainer and driver (ROMAD), he spent time stationed in Nebraska, South Carolina, Kansas and Alaska. Bob retired in 1991 as a master sergeant and the family settled in North Pole. After retirement, he earned a degree from the University of Alaska Anchorage.
In 1969, he was assigned to a post near Offutt AFB, Neb., where he met Carol. They were married June 20, 1970, at St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Scribner, Neb.
While he was raised Lutheran, as a teenager Bob felt drawn to the Catholic faith and converted in 1970. It was the beginning of a life devoted to the church. Bob sang in choir, served as a minister of Holy Communion and lector, trained altar servers and was pastoral council president of three parishes.
A passionate participant in the Knights of Columbus, Bob earned honorary life membership for his more than 26 years of service. He served as Grand Knight of the Northern Lights Council 8308 in North Pole and Faithful Navigator of the Archbishop Charles Seghers Assembly 1515 in Fairbanks. A Fourth Degree Knight, Bob was recognized by his assembly in 2013 with their highest honor, the Pro Deo et Patria Award, for his dedication and vocation to his God and country through the Catholic Church and the U.S. Air Force.
Bob is survived by his wife, Carol; mother, Ruth, of North Pole; son, Robert, and his wife, Tiffany, and their children, Jacob, Audrey, Olin and Caroline, of North Pole; daughter, Amanda, and her husband, Eric Downing, and their children, Cabrini and Peter, of Renton, Wash.; son, Barry, and his wife, Tiffany, and their son, Abram, of Anchorage; brother, William, and his wife, Cindy, of Matteson, Ill.; and nephew, T.R. Piser, of Bloomington, Del.
Bob was preceded in death by his father, Robert Piser; his brother, Thomas Piser; his mother-in-law, Marguerite Keithley; and his father-in-law, Olin Keithley.
A Rosary is scheduled at 10:30 a.m. with funeral Mass to follow at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 1, at North Pole's St. Nicholas Catholic Church.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund is set up at Alaska USA with proceeds going to the
and the Wounded Warrior Project. Donations can mailed or deposited at any Alaska USA branch; please reference Robert Piser.
Arrangements were entrusted to Fairbanks Funeral Home.
Published in Daily News-Miner on Feb. 28, 2014