BOLIVAR - Robert C. North Sr., 9079 Dagget Hollow Road, Bolivar, passed away Friday (Oct. 11, 2013) at his home surrounded by his family, following a long illness.
Born Aug. 12, 1925, in Corning, he was the son of the late Carol and Ruth Wycoff North. He married the former Cheryl Burrows, who survives.
Bob graduated from Portville Central School, class of 1943. After graduation at 17 years of age, he enlisted in the U.S. Army
Air Corps, serving as a staff sergeant. He was a radio operator on B29 and member of the 498th Bomb Group, 39th Squadron stationed in Saipan, Tinian Island and Guam. From those locations, he participated in bombing raids over Japan. He was discharged in 1946. He built North Body Shop in Portville which was later destroyed by fire and rebuilt with the help of many Portville citizens. In the 1960s he founded Portville Concrete Products, and in 1992 he founded North Pro Hardware. He was president of both businesses at the time of his death.
Bob was a lifetime member of the Portville Fire Department and past member of the Moose and Elks clubs. His first love was flying and he earned his pilot license in 1979. He enjoyed flying his Piper Saratoga with family and friends. His destinations included Florida and other airport locations around the country. He was a former member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. He also enjoyed building and designing grandfather clocks and flew them to airports near customers' homes.
In addition to his wife Cheryl, he is survived by his family, Robert C. (Georgette) North Jr. of Princeton, N.J., Stanley (Sue) North of Concord, N.C., Laura (Ken) Shields of Portville, Linda (Larry) Douglas of Portville, Terry (Betty) Burrows Jr. of Olean, Tammy (Russell) Martin of Portville, and Cyndi (Bobby) Williams of Portville; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren; a brother, Bruce (Bernadette) North of Cuba Lake; many nieces and nephews; and his former wife, Betty Hawley.
Family will receive friends from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Monday at the Guenther Funeral Home Inc., 51 S. Main St., Portville, where funeral and committal services will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday (Oct. 15, 2013). Burial will be in Chestnut Hill Cemetery, Portville.
Flowers are gratefully declined. Memorial donations may be made to the Portville Fire Department Ambulance Fund or to the West Clarksville Fire Department Ambulance Fund.