Robert "Bob" Kenneth Stein
Robert "Bob" Kenneth Stein
Robert "Bob" Kenneth Stein, 95, went to meet his "Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ" on November 30, 2017. At that time, he was living at Cedar Ridge Assisted Living and Memory Care in Superior, WI.
"Bobby" was born to Henry and Ruth (Peterson) Stein in Duluth, MN, on February 5, 1922. Throughout his childhood he attended several elementary schools in the Duluth/Superior area. He graduated from Morris High School in Morris, MN.
After graduation, he moved back to Superior where he started to work as a shop hand for the Great Northern Railroad, but was drafted into WWII on November 10, 1942. He took basic training in Hawaii and served as a medic in the Mariana Islands and Saipan. He was honorably discharged in November of 1945. Upon his return, he continued to work for the railroad as a shop hand.
He married Genevieve (Stenback) Wicklund on July 29, 1947 and they settled in Superior. Shortly after, he began his apprenticeship as a machinist. (He tells the story of how he was working in the shop when Artie Hagen had asked the foreman, "Why don't you get this kid an apprenticeship?"
The foreman replied, "He's already got a job."
Mr. Hagen would have none of that so he went to talk with the boss man....fifteen minutes later, Robert got the apprenticeship) He then attended school at Dunwoody College of Technology near Fort Snelling, MN, where his small family lived on the barracks with his in-laws.
From there, they moved back to Superior, where he continued to work as a machinist for the Great Northern, which eventually merged with Union Pacific to become Burlington Northern. Whenever he faced a layoff with the BN, he would work for Lidgerwood Mundy, then back to the BN again. (He spoke with pride about how he was "never laid off".) He retired after 40 years; choosing the date of his retirement to coincide with the day his wife was scheduled for major surgery, so he could be her caregiver.
He was involved in several organizations, including the Superior Masons and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, the latter of which he served for over 40 years in various capacities, concluding his service with the position of "recording secretary" when he retired.
After Robert accepted Jesus as his Savior, he served as an adult Sunday School teacher for several years at Darrow Road Wesleyan Church. In the most recent years, he faithfully attended Sunday services at Heart to Heart Ministries, where his stepson David E. Wicklund is pastor.
Bob loved to do many things.
*Very often you'd find him at the kitchen table playing cribbage with someone. He taught many how to play. "Fifteen-two and her eyes are blue." "Fifteen-four and there ain't no more"
*He worked many hours crafting and maintaining an extensive model trainset in his basement.
*He also enjoyed listening to the radio and watching shows like "ALF" (HA!).
*He loved his children and grandchildren (and great- and great-great-grandchildren) dearly, and visits from the littlest ones especially brightened his day.
Grandpa Bob will be remembered for his wit and wry sense of humor, and for having a kind heart under his seemingly gruff exterior. He always had a song for any occasion and would often launch into an old melody with his deep, soulful voice.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Genevieve, his brother Gilbert and sister Doris, grandson Gary Robert Wicklund, great-grandson Austin Edwards, and great-great-granddaughter Avanley Gariepy-Anderson. He is survived by his children, stepson David (Laurel) Wicklund, son Bernard (Joan) Stein, and daughter Marcella "Marcy" Upthegrove, as well as 13 (or 21 if you include spouses) grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren (31 with spouses), and 5 great-great grandchildren, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
The family wants to thank Rick and Deanna Peterson and all the staff at Cedar Ridge for their loving and thoughtful care over the last few years. Grandpa very much-loved having caregivers to joke with and tease each day.
A family memorial service is scheduled for July 15th, 2018. Interment, with military honor guard (presentation by grandson Robert Upthegrove and his wife Janelle), will be at Greenwood Cemetery.
Memorials can be sent to:
Railroad Evangelistic Association
PO Box 5026
Vancouver, WA 98668
ACC Youth Cribbage Program
Attn: Larry Hassett Membership Chairman
PO Box 2444
Roseburg OR 97470-0510
The Downs-LeSage Funeral Home, 1304 Hammond Avenue, Superior, is assisting the family with arrangements. To leave a condolence or sign the guestbook, please visit our website at www.downs-lesage.com.