Robert E. Bernard

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Photo Robert E. Bernard 1923 -2008 Passed away unexpectedly on May 20, 2008. He was a senior west coast executive for Kaiser Engineers for 28 years, a champion master ski racer, a world traveler, an accomplished photographer and had a passion for the arts, fine wine and good company. He had undying love for his family and friends and was an inspiration to all who knew him. He is survived by his loving wife Barbara W. Heard whom he married in 2002 and both their families. Robert was the eldest of three siblings born in Norwalk, CT. He was a US Navy lieutenant aboard the USS Intrepid during WWII, where he served in the Pacific. He received a degree in aeronautical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, graduating in 1947. He moved west to attend Stanford University where he earned an MBA in 1949. There he met his wife Patricia H. Bernard whom he married in 1950. Together they raised three children in Contra Costa County. He joined the Henry J. Kaiser Engineering and Construction Company in 1950 where his career culminated as executive vice president in charge of international operations and marketing. Through his work he traveled extensively in the Middle East where his life long passion for travel was cultivated. He retired at the age of 55 and began his many years of adventures covering all seven continents. When not traveling, he enjoyed spending time at his San Francisco and Lake Tahoe homes. He was an active supporter of the arts, enjoying the symphony and opera. As a master ski racer he acted as a ski racing official, administrator, journalist and competitor. He won 22 national titles including winning the World Cup long race series in his age class in 1994. He raced in 12 countries, his latest race being in March 2008 at the age of 84. Robert will be dearly missed and remembered always by his brother David W. Bernard, his wife Kathy and their family; his children: Kenneth, David and his wife Julie Lipman Bernard; Michele Barnes and her husband Tim Barnes; his grandchildren: Nicholas Bernard, Hailie, Marina and Bronwyn Barnes; his wife Barbara W. Heard; her children: Laurie Poage, David Heard and his wife Diana Scheid; Katherine Landers and her husband Logan Landers; her grandchildren: Bartlett Heard, Meghan Tumlinson and her husband Mike; Tim Heard, Brian and Kevin Poage, Christopher Landers; and great-grandson, Cole Tumlinson. Celebrations of Robert's Life will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to Lake Tahoe Ski Club Foundation, PO Box 435, Tahoe City, CA 96145 or North Lake Tahoe Historical Society, PO Box 6141, Tahoe City, CA 96145.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from May 25 to May 26, 2008