Robert "Bob" Russell McGue
07/26/1924 - 10/20/2012
Resident of Oakland
Robert "Bob" Russell McGue, born July 26, 1924 in Oakland California, passed peacefully into the arms of the Lord in the early morning of October 20, 2012. He was a member of the "Greatest Generation," a child of the Depression who served in Europe in WWII and returned to California to marry Helene, the love of his life. Together they raised their six children in Oakland's Dimond district. For more than 50 years, Bob and Helene served as leaders in their community, familiar volunteers at St Jarlath's school and parish, ready coaches for sports teams and cheerleading squads.
As his father had done before him, Bob joined the Oakland Fire Department, where he served with great distinction for 42 years. For him, firefighting was not only a family legacy, it was his passion. He was grateful for a department that allowed a hardworking young man with only a high school education to advance through its ranks, from Lieutenant to Captain to Battalion Chief and ultimately to Assistant Chief. He was committed to ensuring that the next generation of firefighters had the same opportunities he had, serving as mentor to many, and helping them prepare for the firefighters' examination in a night course he taught for many years at Oakland High School. The companionship and heroism of these several generations of firefighters were a continuing source of pride, inspiration, and joy for Bob, and they provided a multitude of stories and lessons he shared with his children and grandchildren over the years.
After Helene passed away in 1994, Bob was fortunate to find love for a second time, and in 2008 he married Ginny Casavant. They shared four wonderful years together, rich with adventures, travel, friends and family.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents George and Gertrude, his wife Helene, his brother George, and his granddaughter Rebecca. He is survived by and remains in the hearts of his wife Ginny, his children Michael (Charla), Matthew (Betsy), Daniel (Monica), Marsha (Randy) and Denis (Sherri), his stepson Robert Ryan, his brother Don (Cathy), his sister-in-law Melba, his grandchildren Samantha, Caitlyn, Nathaniel, Brittani and Elise, his step-grandchildren Tyler and Jefferson, and Ginny's children William, Drew, Gladys, and Mary.
The McGue family is especially appreciative of the compassionate care provided him in his final days by the staff at Baywood Court Health Center in Castro Valley.
A sharing of memories and celebration of Bob's life will take place on Tuesday, October 30th at 10 AM at St. Jarlath Church, 2620 Pleasant Street at the corner of Fruitvale Avenue, Oakland. There will also be a public viewing on Monday, October 29th at 5 pm also at St. Jarlath.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be directed to St. Jarlath Church and School.
HOLY ANGELS COOPER
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Oct. 24 to Oct. 25, 2012