Paradise, CA 95969-4146
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Robert E. "Bob" Whitcomb

1924 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Robert E. "Bob" Whitcomb Obituary
ROBERT E. "BOB" WHITCOMB Robert E. "Bob" Whitcomb, , passed away peacefully at his home in Paradise on June 16, 2017. He was born at home on Nov. 15, 1924 in Esparto, CA. His father, Edwin Whitcomb, was a ranch foreman and his mother, maiden name Elsie Dangerfield, immigrated from Lancaster, England. Growing up on a ranch and in the country, Bob enjoyed the good life and lifetime passion of fishing and hunting. After graduation from high school and business college, Bob was called by Uncle Sam to basic training in Ft. Collins, CO. and Camp Pinedale in Fresno, CA. After 7 months of signal corps training, he was sent overseas to the South Pacific to defend the country he loved in WWII. He landed in Milne Bay, New Guinea, traveled to Owi Island and was involved in many battles including the Invasion of Biak Island and the Invasion of Leyte whereby his ship was hit by a Japanese Kamikaze plane forcing him and his fellow soldiers to abandon ship. During his 26 months overseas he went to Mindanao and Clark Field on Luzon in the Philippines and to Okinawa setting up communications for the 5th Air Force. When the war ended his unit was sent to Japan with the occupational force and Bob was sent home and discharged as a Sargent in December 1945 at Camp Beal, CA Bob Whitcomb worked in the accounting department for the City of Woodland. He met his wife and mother of his children, Illa Mae Fairlee, at a city picnic. Bob's love of sports involved coaching two city championship Little League teams in the 50's. He and his best man, Don Stevens, decided to purchase a "Spudnut Hut" franchise in 1957 and opened the donut, breakfast, and lunch diner in Oroville where Jenn's Caf‚ is currently located on Mitchell St. in Oroville. In 1966, local insurance agent and friend Chet Meyers recruited Bob to become a Farmers Insurance Agent where he stayed until he retired in 1989. In 1974, Illa Mae passed away and Bob got another chance at love when he married Diane Walkley in 1983. They enjoyed traveling, cruises, and each other's company for the rest of his life. Bob continued to hunt, fish, cook and barbeque as long as his eyesight would permit. He always looked at life as a glass half full, even enjoying a low vision retreat to educate himself on being as independent as possible. His last years involved listening to countless books on tape, the constant company of friends and family, and a nightly routine of a bourbon and soda cocktail. Bob Whitcomb loved people and entertaining his many friends. He was a very active member of many organizations including a 43 year member of the Elks, 47 year member and past president of the Native Sons of the Golden West, the Moose, Eagles, VFW, and American Legion. He always thought he had lived in the best of times and loved his life. Bob Whitcomb was predeceased by his daughter, Leslie Hall, who passed away in April of 2016. He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Diane Whitcomb, his daughter, Carol Ann Johnson of Vacaville, son Larry Whitcomb and wife Anita of Pine Grove, CA., sisters Elsie Smith and husband Jim, of Auburn and Ethel Zielesch of Orland, step daughters Melissa Begbie and Bernadette Grant of Paradise, Allison Lachnidt and husband Rick of Colorado Springs, CO and stepson, Bill Walkley of Bandon, Oregon. Bob was laid to rest in a private military service on June 22, 2017 at the Oroville Memorial Cemetery. A public memorial and celebration of his life is scheduled for August 19, 2017. To attend please RSVP at 877-1479.
Published in Chico Enterprise-Record on July 29, 2017
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