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Robert Everett McMullen

1923 ~ 2013
Robert Everett McMullen was born on September 26, 1923, in Indianapolis, Indiana, to E. E. "Mac" McMullen and Marguerite Eleanor Ambuhl McMullen. He met the love of his life, Carol Joanne Simmons, in church when he was 18 and she 14, and it was love at first sight. They married six years later, on March 21, 1948, after Bob returned from World War II, in which he served on an Army ship transporting supplies and eventually returning prisoners of war to their homes. Bob attended Butler University and Columbia University, earning bachelor and master degrees. Carol attended Butler, Indiana University, and Ball State University, also earning bachelor and master degrees. They raised two children, Randy (1951) and Andrea (1953) and were such great parents that their kids' friends were envious. Bob served more than 25 years in the Indianapolis Public Schools as a beloved and highly esteemed teacher, vice principal, and principal, retiring from that position at School 62 in 1978. He and Carol moved soon thereafter to North Port, Florida. The hardest part of moving was having to sell "The Cottage," the split-level lakeside cabin Bob and Carol designed and built themselves from the ground up which served as the backdrop for decades of water sports, laughter, and fellowship with family and friends. In Florida, "retired" just didn't describe Bob, as this man who could do almost anything tirelessly served his new community and church, St. Paul's Presbyterian, resurrected his lifelong love of instrumental music, began playing trumpet and baritone horn in various bands, and soon co-founded the North Port Concert Band and later the North Port Concert Orchestra. These organizations quickly blossomed into large, prized emblems of the booming city. As the city's educational and cultural needs grew, Bob championed the building of a spectacular new performing arts center, which remains the cultural center of North Port. After 28 years of service to North Port and later to Venice, including Venice Presbyterian Church, in failing health but never missing an opportunity to crack a joke, Bob moved with Carol in 2010 to Salt Lake City, Utah, to be near family. For years, in addition to being regarded as the guy who could beat anyone at Trivial Pursuit, Bob was also fondly known to everyone he encountered as "Mr. Mean," a comical misnomer for this kind, gentle man who, when asked how he was doing, always answered, "Mean as ever!" Never a single word of complaint ever escaped his lips.
He passed away peacefully on Father's Day, June 16, 2013, as Carol held his hand and whispered love to him. Sweetheart, Dad, Grandpa, we miss you!
Bob is survived by Carol, his wife of 65 years; their son, Randall Robert McMullen (Janet Carnal) of Florence, Alabama,; their daughter, Andrea Kay McMullen Townsend (Bill) of Salt Lake City; their five grandchildren, Corey McMullen, Christopher McMullen, Eric Townsend (Heidi), Kevin Townsend (Sally), and Leigh Townsend Gutzwiller (Josh); their "adopted granddaughter," Jaime Fitzgerald; and their great-grandchildren, Khloiey, Kayla, Ashley, Ava, Cross, Shae, Kate, Reed, and Piper.
A celebration of Bob's life will take place Friday, June 21, at 2:00 PM at the Wellington, 4522 S. 1300 E., Salt Lake City. In lieu of flowers, donations to the (www.alz.org) would be gratefully welcomed. Bob's family wishes to express heartfelt thanks to the loving, dedicated care of Hospice of Utah, especially Heidi Krubsack, and the Wellington staff.

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Published in Salt Lake Tribune on June 20, 2013
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