CONCORD, N.C. -
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Robert Leroy "Bob" Bergreen, formerly of Allegany, N.Y., passes away Thursday (Dec. 19, 2013) at the Brian Health Care Center, Kannapolis, after several years of health problems.
Born Aug. 8, 1926, in Olean, N.Y., he was the son of Roy and Doris MacMurray Bergreen. In 1957, in Ripley, N.Y., he married Ila Jean Nicholson.
In 1944, while still in high school, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps, participating in Operation Crossroads in the Marshal Islands where atomic testing took place at Bikini Atoll. Conducted by the U.S. government, it sought to document the effect of atomic weapons on warships.
Returning home to graduate form Allegany High School, he attended the University of Oklahoma and in 1950 received a business degree from Bryant and Stratton College in Buffalo, N.Y. He worked at Hunter Agency, Olean, for 37 years as an insurance agent, and held the position of vice president of the corporation.
Bob was an avid and accomplished golfer throughout his life. As a charter member of the Birch Run Country Club in Allegany, membership in the early years involved gathering up and disposing rocks from undeveloped land to produce acceptable fairway conditions for play. He later enjoyed regular participation in the men's league at the Bolivar County Club. Other favorite pastimes included fishing skiing, woodworking, attending St. Bonaventure basketball games, following the Buffalo Bills and Chautauqua Institution worship and concerts.
During his residency in Allegany, Bob served on the board of Olean Fire and Casualty Insurance agents, the former Olean Council of Camp Fire Girls and the Allegany Public Library board. He helped with fund drives for Boy Scouts, Camp Fire Girls and the United Way. He was a volunteer driver with his wife for Meals on Wheels in four different states in which they resided. A member of the First Presbyterian Church in Olean for nearly 40 years, Bob served as a deacon, was ordained a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. and helped as a youth group adviser and committee member where needed.
In recent months, he and his wife have received loving care and support from St. James Lutheran Church, Concord, where they worshipped. A prayer service led by the Rev. Dr. Charles Zimmerman for family, neighbors and friends is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. Sunday (Dec. 22, 2013) in St. James chapel.
He was predeceased by a sister, D. Anne Fitch of Franklinville, N.Y.; and a brother, David M. Bergreen of Portville, N.Y.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Ila Jean; a daughter, Lynn (Daryl) Bergreen-Johnson of Allegany, N.Y.; a son, Scott (Karen) Bergreen of Bremen, Ohio; five grandchildren, Austin, Aubrie and Autumn Johnson and Keith and Daniel Bergreen; a brother, Donald M. Bergreen of Olean, N.Y.; and several nieces and nephews, including a loving and committed family niece, Kathleen Nicholson of La Habra, Calif.
In lieu of flowers, the family invites donations to the
Western New York, 2805 Wehrle Drive Suite 6, Williamsville, NY 14221.
An announcement of the memorial service to be held for Mr. Bergreen in the spring in Olean will be made at a later time.
Published in The Olean Times Herald on Dec. 21, 2013