Photo courtesy of Soller-Baker Funeral Homes, Inc. - Lafayette Chapel - Lafayette

Robert Gordon Williams

Jul 4, 1931 - Mar 25, 2019 (Age 87)

Guest Book

Not sure what to say?

Dawn and family,
I am so sorry to hear about the death of Bob. What a kind man and a good neighbor from back in the Ocala days. His photograph of the 1964 Jeff High School basketball team receiving state championship rings in Hinkle Fieldhouse is still one of my all-time favorites. It helped make me want to become a photographer. The Williams family will always hold a special place in my heart.

Dawn...I am so sorry for your loss. Thoughts and prayers.

In loving memory of a wonderful man who has raised a beautiful family. You will be missed, but your memories live on.

Dawn & family,
I'm very sorry about your father's death. I appreciated meeting him and knowing him so many years at the camera shop. And then getting to know you, especially after realizing you and Jerry were also friends of my cousin Brian and family. I hope your family memories will help you through this difficult time. I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers. God bless you.

Bob was one of my first bosses. He was so kind and patient. I am grateful for my time at Berry's. Dawn, I am sorry for your loss.

Ann, you and Bob in recent years became good golf buddies at the West Lafayette Golf & Country Club. We will miss Bob and his stories. We will keep you both in our prayers.

Vince and Roxanne Drnevich

I didn't really know Bob, having met him only once or twice briefly. But he made my good friend Ann very happy, and for that I bless him.

Ann and family, I really enjoyed getting to know Bob, first in the camera shop and then when he would attend Rotary events with Rev. Ann. I will remember the sincere smile and hugs. One of my favorites songs, ..may the angels welcome you to paradise!

I am totally shocked at the death of Bob. I grew up as a younger cousin of Bob. I always called him Bobby from when we were younger. I remember him having a photograph developing area at Aunt Millie and Uncle Art's. Home. It was always very dark in there ...the dark room! He was into photography early on. I also remember that Bobby loved bananas. My mother told me he could walk in the house and smell them. Not sure about that.. Bob was always kind and loving to others. He was a...


Robert's Obituary

Robert Gordon Williams was born in Lafayette on July 4, 1931, to Arthur Verne “Art” Williams and Mildred Laura (Thewlies) Williams. Bob graduated from Jefferson High School in 1949.

While at Jeff, Bob managed the football and basketball teams for two years and the track team for three years, including the basketball team that won the 1948 IHSAA State Championship. Bob took movies of basketball and football games for the Jeff Athletic Department for 25 years. He joined the Jeff Camera Club his sophomore year, beginning a lifelong connection with photography.

He married JoAnn Jones (1931-1999) on August 17, 1951. Bob and JoAnn had two children, Dawn Lezlie (Williams) Ross (born 1952) and Dana Gordon “Dan” Williams (1954-2013). Bob married H. Ann Smith October 6, 2000.

Bob’s first job, at age 12, was as a caddy at the Lafayette Country Club, and he played golf for 75 years, getting six hole-in-ones. He managed a 165-customer paper route in Highland Park during World War II. While in high school, Bob worked as an usher at the Mars Theater and at the New Market Meat Department on Main Street. After graduation, Bob worked for the Lafayette Dental Lab.

In 1950, Bob joined Berry’s Camera Shop (est. 1948) as a salesman. Bob purchased the business from Herman Berry in 1972 and operated it until 1997, when he sold it to Dawn and Dan. After retirement, he continued to work part time until 2007.

Bob served in the U.S. Army 38th Infantry, Headquarters Battalion, Second Division from October 1951 to July 1953, reaching the rank of Sergeant. After basic training in Breckenridge, Kentucky, he was sent to Korea to do intelligence and reconnaissance. He was sent to Koje Island off the south coast of Korea in May 1952. In July 1952 he was moved to Chorwon, where he was stationed on Hill 347 near Pork Chop Hill and Old Baldy, calling in rounds of artillery coming and going from the battle.

Bob joined Bethany Presbyterian Church in 1953, serving as an elder and a deacon, and attended Lafayette Great Banquet #32 and was the official photographer for the next 100 banquets. He was a charter member of the Breakfast Optimist Club and helped build the Armstrong Park baseball complex. In addition to photography and golf, Bob also enjoyed woodworking and travel. He was part of a supper club that attempted to try a new restaurant every Tuesday for more than 20 years. Bob’s Fourth of July birthday pool party and fish fry was legendary among friends and family.

Bob was preceded in death by his first wife JoAnn, his son Dan, his brother Jerry, and his sister Phyllis Walker. He is survived by his wife H. Ann Williams; his daughter Dawn Ross (Jerry); his daughter-in-law Valerie Carr; his sister Midge Habben; grandchildren Alison Williams (Jeremiah Provo) of Bonita Springs FL, Benjamin L. Ross (Jason Griffith) of Indianapolis, and Laura O’Connor (Ryan) of Lafayette; and great-grandson Gavin O’Connor; step children Chuck Geisler of Louisville KY, Suzann Lange (Criss) of Montrose CO, Nicole Skinner (Spencer) of Valparaiso IN; step grandchildren Campbell, Henry, and Kell Geisler, Lily Wills (Craig), Kalli Bridges, and Alex and Zach Skinner; and step great-grandchildren Dallas and Louisa Wills.

A celebration of Bob’s life will be held at 11:00 am Saturday, March 30, 2019 at Bethany Presbyterian Church, 3305 Longlois Dr. Lafayette, IN 47904 with Rev Kevin Bowers and Dr. Donna Enersen officiating.

In lieu of flowers those wishing may contribute in Bob’s name to either Bethany Presbyterian Church or Lafayette Urban Ministry.

Read More