On Oct. 6, 2018, the Lord gained a good and faithful servant, Robert Lee Ford, 91, of Cedar Rapids, following a short illness. Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Oct. 12, at St. Paul's Methodist Church in Cedar Rapids. Visitation will take place from 10 to 11 a.m. Friday at the church prior to the service.
Robert was born July 4, 1927, on a farm near Hartley, Iowa, to Albert and Marie (Muilenburg) Ford. He graduated from high school in 1945. He married Mary Jean Pohlmann on Feb. 14, 1948. She passed away on Dec. 24, 2001.
Bob had a zest for life, enjoying catering and driving a support vehicle for RAGBRAI with his son-in-law Tony well into his retirement and was always looking forward to the next adventure. He also had a passion for gardening and developed a love of growing and eating hot peppers, as well as growing the best tomatoes ever. He always marveled at the fact that when he was young, he picked corn by hand and did not have electricity as a child, yet he became proficient using a computer and cellphone along with a lifelong curiosity about how things worked. In 1992, he and Mary took the trip of a lifetime to New Zealand, where their daughter Kim was working at the time. After retirement, winters for several years were spent in Florida with their son Bob Jr. and his wife, Julie. He spent many happy hours watching the Chicago Cubs, and was thrilled he lived to see them win a World Series! He will be remembered for his kind spirit and ready smile.
Robert had a deep faith and was always dedicated to his church family. He was an integral part in the building of the new United Methodist Church in Melvin, Iowa, in the '60s. Early in his marriage, he farmed and then owned a gas station in Hartley, Iowa. He then moved to Melvin with his young family and worked at Juber Implement Dealer for several years. In 1968, the family moved to Sioux City, where he was a superintendent at Sioux City Foundry until his retirement in 1992. In 1995, he and Mary relocated to Cedar Rapids to be closer to family. While in Cedar Rapids, he belonged to St. Paul's Methodist Church, where he was a faithful member, particularly enjoying his Sunday school class and Wednesday Morning Bible Study group.
Bob is survived by his four children, Robert (Julie) of Bellaire, Fla., Shirley (Tony) Bata and Kim Corcoran of Cedar Rapids, and Kelley of Onalaska, Wis.; as well as a sister, Clarice Buntjer of Worthington, Minn.; seven grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Jean; his parents; infant sister, Shirley; brother, Darrel; and brother-in-law, Floyd.
He is also survived by his beloved pets, Maxx and Kitty.
The family would like to thank doctors Mary Anne Nelson, James Pape and Jeff Nielsen for their kind and compassionate care, along with the outstanding care of the staff at the Hiawatha Care Center.