Bob was 87, the last few years of his life had been upended by health issues, but prior to that he lived an abundant life.
My father always shares his earliest memories of growing up on Parkwood Road in Carrick, Pittsburgh. His house and the street are no longer there, but he spoke of a free and fun childhood playing baseball with his brothers and cousins. He loved dogs, but every dog we had growing up had to measure up to his beloved Fluff. A collie mix that his grandmother fed under the table which would upset his father. He adored his mother, and told stories of how she would buy him pants in downtown Pittsburgh and what an experience riding trolleys with his mother was.
He later joined the US Army and again, told us repeatedly his stories of being stationed with his buddies in Germany. We can repeat most of them, as we have heard them so often.
He came back to Pittsburgh, and while hospitalized had a chance meeting with a nurse in the South Side Hospital. you could say it was one of those love at first sight situations as they recently celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary.
The city guy moved to the country, and raised four children, Lisa (Paul) Gioia, Jared (Debra) Altman, Gretchen (Chris) Corrado, and Heather (Jim) Dohr.
To say Bob loved the Pittsburgh sports teams was an understatement. Growing up in the 70s there was no talking or carrying on during Steelers games. He loved the Pens, and spent many summer evenings with the screen door open watching or listening the the Pirates. Bob always had a huge garden, and complained about store bought tomatoes. He loved skiing downhill, so much that he would go skiing with his friend in the morning and head to work in the afternoon. He kept skiing into his 70s. He loved swimming in his pool, diving in and getting a great tan from his lounger. He was fortunate to travel to Europe many times, as well as crisscrossing the US in a motor home. He was always the safest driver.
He was in love with all candies that were made at Sarris most notably the chocolate covered cherry cordials. They were his favorite.
We would all agree he was most happy around his family especially his grandchildren. Affectionately known as Opa. Christopher, Hogan, Emily, Claudia, Sloan, Robert, Sydney,,Cecilia, Sofia, and Agatha. When they vacationed to the beach, he would take the young children up for an afternoon nap. We joked that the kids were loose while he was taking a siesta.
He missed very few football games, softball games, girls basketball (sitting in the stands with his newspaper)or school functions, including graduations from high school and college. He listened eagerly to all of the latest accomplishments in everyone’s lives with a huge smile.
He smiled often. He didn’t sweat the big things.
He was in our opinion, the best dad. We love you Opa.
Arrangements are private and entrusted to Sollon Funeral and Cremation Services, Ltd., 30 East College Street, Canonsburg, PA, 15317, Phillip L. Sollon, Supervisor, 724-746-1000.
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