Deceased March 7, 2020

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In Memory

After a long and fruitful life literally “doing the Lord’s work,” Bob passed away March 7, 2020, in Marshfield, Mass., at age 93. He was born in Boston, attended Andover and enlisted in the U.S. Naval Air Corps. After his discharge, he came to Amherst and graduated in 1949.

Preparing for the ministry began at Union Theological Seminary in 1950 and continued at the Hartford Theological Seminary, from which he graduated in 1953. He served in several churches in Connecticut; in White Plains, N.Y.; and subsequently at the First Congregational Church in Stockbridge, Mass., where his congregation became first in the nation to join the United Church of Christ (UCC). He was called to that church in South Dartmouth, Mass., in 1967 and stayed there until his retirement in 1990.

He was married in 1947 to Dorothy Thompson; they lived in the G.I. Village and had four children. In 1972, he married Frances Brayley and took on the responsibility of her six children. He had 16 grandchildren.

At age 78, Bob earned his doctor of ministry degree at Andover Union Theological Seminary with 50 members of his proud family in attendance. He was involved with many charitable organizations in two states and had a long affiliation with the New Bedford Yacht Club with his Friendship sloop, Sky Pilot.

He was predeceased by his wife, Fran, in 2018 after 46 years of marriage; a son in 1963; a daughter in 1993; and a second daughter in 2020. He leaves seven children, 15 grandchildren and a host of warm memories for the “Reverend Bob,” whose most popular phrase, repeated daily, was “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” What a fitting reminder for all his admiring classmates.

Gerry Reilly ’49