Robert P. "Bob" Slaff

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Robert "Bob" P. Slaff, 89, Annapolis and formerly of Kingston, died March 8, 2013 in Crofton, Md. He was a former marine-supply vendor and journalist, writing on Chesapeake Bay maritime and environmental matters.

Raised in Kingston, son of a newspaper distributor and a homemaker, he graduated from Wyoming Seminary Preparatory School in 1940 before enrolling at the University of Michigan.

He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1942 and became a quartermaster aboard blimps, earning the rank of lieutenant, the U.S. Navy Air Medal with gold and silver stars and the Distinguished Flying Cross. He earning a bachelor's degree in political science in 1947.

Bob's lifelong affair with boating began on a vacation to Harveys Lake, when he tried sailing a Barnaget Bay Pumpkin Seed sailboat that he immediately rolled over. In 1958, he founded Inland Marine in his home and became a distributor of marine equipment. From 1973 to 1976, he served as president of the Susquehanna River Basin Association.

In 1982, he fulfilled his dream of living near the Chesapeake Bay. He began a charter business, taking anglers aboard his 30-foot boat, the Inmar, until he was 86. With his distinctive white mustache, dark Greek fisherman's cap and license plates reading "BOATBOB," he was a presence for more than 30 years along the Annapolis waterfront.

In 2007, Bob became Maryland's first Ambassador of the Chesapeake.

Services were held March 12 at Congregation Kol Shalom, Annapolis, where he was a member.

In addition to his parents, Samuel and Ethel Slaff, he was preceded by sisters, Dorothy Dattner and Joan Davis, both originally of Kingston.

Surviving are his wife of 65 years, the former Esther Shapiro; son, Bruce T. Slaff, Harrisburg; daughters, Sara Slaff, Baltimore; Susan Slaff Lefkowitz, Bethesda, Md.; Amy Slaff Creelman, Newport Beach, Calif.; eight grandchildren; one great-granddaughter.
Published in Times Leader on Mar. 27, 2013
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