Robert Warren Bumbaugh Sr. (1937 - 2018)

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Robert Warren Bumbaugh Sr. came roaring into the world, a whopping 11 pounds, 12 ounces, on Sept. 8, 1937. On Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018 he flew up to be with his Lord.

Robert was born in Los Angeles to Warren and Nina Bumbaugh and lived his early years in parts of California and Oregon until settling in Fontana in 1948.

It was during his senior year of high school that he met the love of his life Betty Harkless. They were married in April of her junior year of high school, 1956. Their first home was a converted train car where they made many happy memories. They also made their first son there, Robert Warren Bumbaugh Jr.

Shortly after that they moved to Redding, California where they built their own house on property given them by his parents. They also built son number two, Scott Arthur Bumbaugh. His job ended there and he moved his family back to Fontana where he began his career painting houses. He joined the Union and went to night school to become a journeyman painter. There Betty gave birth of their third and final child, Cheryllyn Jean.

Robert and the family lived and worked in southern California until moving to Coeur D'Alene, Idaho in 1969. There he owned his own business painting houses, teaching both of his boys and many of their friends the trade. His family spent many days enjoying the outdoor life that Idaho had to offer.

In 1979 he got the itch to move to Alaska. His adult children followed and helped him and Betty build a log home by hand. There he also fulfilled a lifelong dream to get his pilot's license. He bought a Piper Tri Pacer and flew it as much as he could. More than anything else, he loved flying. He said that was where he felt closest to God. He worked painting houses in Soldotna before finding work on an oil platform in Cook Inlet and later the Prudhoe Bay oil fields painting the oil equipment. Robert was listed in Who's Who in the West, Distinguished Man in the Oil Industry, and named Alaska's Man of the Year.

On his death bed he heard airplanes flying over the house that no one else heard. He said there were two more coming and he would catch a ride on the last one. He did and made that flight to be with his Lord.

Robert is survived by his wife of almost 63 years, Betty Jean; his sons Robert Jr. (April), and Scott (Norma); daughter Cheryllyn (Kelly); 13 grandchildren and many, many great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents Nina and Warren, and, just three weeks ago, his brother Raymond.

A Memorial Service was held at the Coeur d'Alene Church of the Nazarene on Saturday, Jan. 20. In lieu of flowers, Robert wished for his friends and family to make a donation in his name to the Senior Benevolent Fund at the Coeur D'Alene of the Nazarene.

Published in The Peninsula Clarion on Jan. 30, 2018