Call us sad; it is a damp, drizzly November in our souls.
On November 15, 2012, Robert Kunz died peacefully at Hospice of Northwest Ohio. Since the death of his brother, Jamie, November 25, 2011, Rob's journey has been difficult. Thursday, he lay down his burdens - was free, at peace, safe, and reunited with his brother and others who have gone before.
Rob was born to Tom and Elaine Kunz on January 3, 1975, in Toledo. Rob attended Bedford schools and graduated from Bedford High School in 1993. He attended University of Toledo.
Shortly after his birth, I wrote in my notebook: "A poem of promise and love: Robert".
Rob was a gentle, loving person. He collected friends effortlessly, maintained friendships, and valued his friends. His loyalty kept his friends close. His collection included acquaintances from elementary school, high school, and his various jobs. This circle of friends which included people of all ages kept growing. A people person, Rob could talk with anyone; usually he learned a great deal about the other person in a short time.
Although Rob had many friends, his 'best' friend was his brother, Jamie. In adulthood, Rob and Jamie's relationship deepened; they spent time together doing things, just being together, looking out for each other, and helping the other through trying times. Last November, Jamie died. His loss was overwhelming and devastating for Rob. The past year Rob struggled with the great emptiness and grief. Some of his efforts to deal with the sorrow affected his health severely. Too often, amid tears, he cried, "I want my brother". And now they are together.
His caring nature was also evident in his love of animals. The cat he brought home - supposedly, the cat was in field next to McDonald's but really the pet store was giving it away or the cat he found in restaurant parking lot or... no wonder he had three cats and a dog, Sandy. Rob and Sandy were inseparable; he took her everywhere with him, and Sandy visited him at hospice.
His people skills extended to his ease as a host. While in hospice, when his friend, Steve, was visiting, Rob asked for a Mountain Dew. We thought it was for him; he wanted it for Steve. He always assisted with snacks on holidays. Generous with suggestions to the cooks, he made sure the sauces didn't stick and that the buns didn't burn.
Another quality that made him easy to be with was his sense of humor. His quick wit brought many a laugh. He was a word craftsman, choosing his words carefully and pointedly. Certainly, he could rip someone but always in good fun and kindly managed.
Just on a whim, he took a glassblowing class at Toledo Museum of Art and fell in love with it. For several years, he blew glass with his friends. His unique way of signing a piece included a drawing of a cat or dog and he named the piece after the name of the recipient's pet. Friends, relatives and family have his beautiful work to brighten their homes and now to evoke fond memories of Rob.
Rob was a poem of promise and love who left us too soon.
Left to miss, remember, and mourn him so much are his parents, Tom and Elaine Kunz, Beth Richardville (fiancée) and long-time family friend, Robin Rybka. Also surviving are his uncles and aunts, Jack and Helen Kunz, Clarence and Teresa Lance, Bob Lance, and many cousins.
Visitation will be from 2-9 p.m. Tuesday, November 20 at the Michael W. Pawlak Funeral Home, 1640 Smith Road. (at Jackman Road) Temperance, MI, where funeral services will be held Wednesday at 11 a.m. Interment will follow at a later date at Whiteford Union Cemetery. Donations may be made to Hospice of Northwest Ohio or Toledo Museum of Art.