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Robert “Bob” Anderson, 93, of Atlantic, Iowa, died Wednesday, April 6, 2022, at Cass County Memorial Hospital in Atlantic.
Robert Eugene was born on July 20, 1928, in Ottumwa, Iowa, the son of Albin Eugene and Clara Julia Amelia (Sandstrom) Anderson. He was baptized and confirmed at First Lutheran Church in Ottumwa. Bob was raised on an 80-acre family farm. He milked cows by hand and was witness to the shift from horse power to tractors and from lanterns to rural electricity. He was proud of his education in a one-room country school house through eighth grade and then Ottumwa High School where he was active in football and track. Robert graduated in the Class of 1946.
In the fall of 1946, he enlisted in the United States Navy. He completed training in electronics and served the remainder of his tour during WWII as an instructor. He joked that he joined the Navy to see the world and never left the central time zone. After completing his service, he attended Iowa State College (now Iowa State University) where he received a bachelor’s degree in Animal Husbandry.
He was united in marriage to Mary Fern Conder at First Lutheran Church in Ottumwa, Iowa, on June 22, 1952. Bob and Mary grew up on adjoining farms and attended one-room country school together.
His career in animal nutrition began at Chemical Food, Inc. in Mason City, and later moved to Atlantic in November of 1952, when he joined Walnut Grove. He worked as the nutritionist for 35 years. While working at Walnut Grove he and Mary enjoyed many company trips with coworkers. Bob later worked for the United States Government monitoring invasive insects and soil conservation practices in Southwest Iowa.
Mary ran Jack and Jill Nursery School in their home for 35 years. Bob was the handy-man, building the jungle gym, tree-house, and white picket fence among other projects. Bob and Mary were foster parents to many children from infants to teens and he volunteered as a mentor to elementary students.
He was always interested in learning and enjoyed sitting in on high school classes after he retired. He then tutored high school and college students in math and science. He also volunteered to score the Atlantic High School girls’ basketball games for many years.
He was an active member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, including serving as President of the Church Council and many other positions throughout the years. He had both a head and heart for instruction. He taught Sunday School for 22 years and lead the Bethel Bible Series for adults.
Tending his large garden was something he looked forward to every spring, especially tomatoes which he sold at garden market, a stand at his house and Hy-Vee. This year’s seedlings are already popping up under his grow light. He also raised raspberries, melons, potatoes, day lilies and creeping phlox.
Bob and Mary took their family on a 2-week vacation every August. He customized their nursery school van for the annual summer trips, camping in state and national parks.
He was a good neighbor to all and appreciated his long-term friendships with his neighbors, coworkers and card club.
He is preceded in death by his father, Albin Anderson; mother, Clara Anderson; wife, Mary Anderson; sister, Doris McClure; and other relatives and friends.
Bob is survived by his children, Thomas Anderson of Columbus, Nebraska, Susan Anderson of West Des Moines, Iowa, and Jane Anderson and her husband, Phil Moore of Janesville, Wisconsin; grandchildren, Andrew, Alexander, Henry, and Charlie Moore, Krissy (Bobby) Miller, Kent (Lisa), Kyle (Teresa), and Kurt Rothanzl; great-grandchildren; and nephews, Richard (Julie) McClure and Stan (Diana) McClure.
Visitation with the family present will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Sunday, April 10, 2022, at Roland Funeral Home.
A Celebration of Life service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Monday, April 11, 2022, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Atlantic. In recognition of his time in the U.S. Navy, the Atlantic Color Guard will present military honors at the conclusion of the funeral service at the church. Burial will be held at the Atlantic Cemetery. The funeral service will be recorded and available for viewing one day after the service at www.rolandfuneralservice.com.
In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church are preferred.
Roland Funeral Service is caring for Bob’s family and his arrangements. Condolences may be left at www.rolandfuneralservice.com.
Sunday, April 10, 2022
5:00 - 7:00pm
Roland Funeral Service
Monday, April 11, 2022
Starts at 11:00am
St. Paul's Lutheran Church
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