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Robert Benjamin Selman


1932 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Robert Benjamin Selman Obituary
Robert Benjamin Selman

Phoenix - Robert Benjamin Selman, devoted husband and beloved father and brother, passed away on October 8 after a brief battle with leukemia. "Bob" was affectionately known as "Da" by his immediate family and he acted as their central figure, best friend, caretaker, go-to guy in times of crisis or indecision, six-foot security blanket and human Wikipedia. Bob Selman was born on October 29,1932 in Geneva, New York. He graduated Geneva High in upstate New York in 1950, where he was known as quiet and studious, 4 years ahead of his brother Dick and 2 years behind his sister Sue. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Economics from Cornell University and became a Captain in the Air Force and was a supply officer in Japan, a stint which he considered a highlight of his early life. He then obtained his degree of juris doctor from Columbia University and while in New York City met his beautiful future wife of 59 years Betty Turetsky who was working as a registered nurse at a psychiatric hospital. They moved to Phoenix in 1961 and Bob was a respected Phoenix attorney for 45 years who never specialized in any area of law but instead focused on personal attention to the client. In 1964 Bob was offered a tiny cabin on a plot of land which contained a few gaming tables nestled on the Nevada side of the Colorado River. He reluctantly turned it down twice because of lack of financing and it was snapped up 2 years later by a man named Don Laughlin and the rest was history. Bob considered Laughlin, Nevada the "one that got away". Bob and Betty had two children, Carol and Steven, and lived in the same house in North Central Phoenix for 50 years and his children never venture far from the "mother ship". The only real traveling the family did was their annual summer trip to Lakeside, Arizona to stay at Lake of the Woods Resort. Bob was a fan of sleeping (which he did so well because he had such serenity of spirit), watching television, world history, geography, Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley, considered himself a devoted Franklin Roosevelt "New Dealer" in which the Federal Government helps the underprivileged, but was conservative in that he believed in saving everything, a situation which resulted in his house becoming the "Selman-sonion" Museum with its wealth of documents and artifacts. Bob never rushed into a task or decision without a lifetime of consideration. In other words he liked to procrastinate. Bob's omnipresent good nature, ability to laugh at himself and everything else and his gift of making everyone around him feel instantly at ease were his greatest strengths, and he will be missed dearly by all who were blessed to know him. At Bob's request, there will be no service on his behalf. In lieu of flowers the family suggests a donation to a in Bob's name. Arrangements are made under the direction of Abel Mortuary.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Oct. 14, 2018
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