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Robert "Bub" Hallett

1945 - 2020
Robert "Bub" Hallett Obituary
Robert "Bub" Hallett was born in Omena, Michigan, on Sept. 14, 1945, to Chester and Anna Hallett. He was the third youngest child and youngest boy in a family with 11 children. He actually lived the "I walked uphill in a snowstorm to school" life, and it made him appreciate every single thing he had.
Bub always had animals in his life and instilled his love for horses in his daughter. As a child he had horses, dogs and tried to tame random wildlife like raccoons. Bub was drafted into the U.S. Army when he was 18. They wouldn't send him overseas to the battle zone because he was too smart and they wanted him in a place to make decisions.
He was stationed at Ft. Wainwright and fell in love with Alaska. While in Fairbanks, he met and befriended the Fouts family: Grandpa Dean, Uncle Cy and Uncle Ted, who had property and a landing strip for small aircraft on the Chena River.
Once he completed his enlistment with the Army, Bub managed to get a job as a camp cook with Dot and Jim Magoffin. His hope was that they would teach him to fly and he could eventually become a pilot. As they flew out to camp, Billy Magoffin asked Bub how long he'd been a cook, as he was looking forward to the good meals Bub promised. Bub looked at his watch and said, "Well, I've been a cook for about 20 minutes now ..."
Bub reconnected with his childhood friend, Tina Patterson, while he was back home visiting family and she was spending the summer with her family in Omena. They got married at the Santa Claus House in North Pole in November 1974. Their daughter Shea was born in 1976, and son Patrick followed very soon after in 1977. Even though they divorced in 1987, they remained wonderful friends.
Bub did realize his dream of becoming a pilot, and became one of the best around. He started his career with the Magoffins and Alaska Interior Airways (AIA), where he flew cargo through the pipeline building years, and later all over the world. He often said he didn't need to travel anymore, because he had literally been to every single place on Earth there was to go. One of his most memorable trips was taking elephants up to Barrow for the circus. AIA eventually morphed into MarkAir, and he started flying passengers instead of elephants. When MarkAir went bankrupt, he quickly transitioned back to cargo, flying for Atlas Air until his mandated retirement at the age of 60. The very next year, the maximum retirement age changed to 65, and he was asked if he wanted to come back to work. Due to the PG rating of material published in the paper, we can't give an accurate quote of what he actually said, but just think something along the lines of a hard "No."
After retirement, Bub flew two summers for fishing lodges, where he loved the fact he got paid to fly and fish all day.
Bub was larger than life, and made an impression on everyone he met. He was constantly learning and trying to teach his family (and anyone else who would listen) ridiculously obscure words to use in conversation to make themselves sound more smart, like callipygous, defenestration and diminutive. He also loved gadgets and magic tricks. He loved to mesmerize children and good-looking women with his fantastic magic tricks. He was one of the biggest flirts we knew and always had enough charm to warm even the coldest personalities. He also had a habit of either writing "Bub" in black sharpie marker or etching it onto everything he ever owned.
Bub could always be found either flying one of his two airplanes, studying to be a flight instructor, fishing for and smoking salmon, writing his never-ending book, or having an MGD with his Gallo's family. Bub's passion for flying, fishing and hunting are the basis for most of Shea and Patrick's fabulous childhood memories.
Bub lived an amazingly full life, and we joked that he had as many lives as a cat. He was incredibly accident prone and was the most flammable human being we knew. He lived to tell about his multiple airplane crashes and how he caught himself on fire four times. Anything airplane related he documented in the book that we swear he'd been working on for the last 25 years. We have also decided that if we can get it published, we are changing the name of it to "Don't Bub It Up."
On Feb. 28, 2020, as Bub was prepping the plane to go for an afternoon flight with Patrick, he was struck multiple times by the running prop. Although he initially beat all the odds and was deemed a miracle survivor by any medical professional who was on duty the day he came in, he ultimately wasn't strong enough to survive his injuries. His unbelievably stubborn self put up one hell of a fight, though. He passed peacefully on a beautifully sunny day, March 12, surrounded by his children, grandchildren and Tina.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Roddy, Chet, Bill, Hartford, Cyril, Fred; and his beloved dog, Beau.
He is survived by his daughter Shea; son Patrick and his wife Trudi; grandsons Slade, Austin and Cooper; his ex-wife; and wonderful friend Tina and her husband Ted; brother Ed; sisters Margie, Dorothy and Mary; and countless extended family members and friends.
A celebration of life will be planned for a future date in Anchorage, and another in Omena at Northcamp on Nov. 14, 2020, the night before opening day of deer season. Bub's ashes will be spread in Minto Flats at his hunting camp, some in Omena, and a small locket of them will be kept in each of his planes so he can keep flying. Tailwinds, Captain.
Published in Daily News-Miner on Mar. 22, 2020
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