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Obituary of Robert William Jacker
Robert (Bob) Jacker was born on April 2, 1922 to Charles and Anna Jacker in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was the youngest of 6 siblings: Elizabeth (Betty), Walter, Ferdinand (Ferd), James and Anna. They were very close knit as their loving Mother, Anna, passed before Bob’s first birthday. Betty, the oldest, took on much of the caring for all at that time. Bob grew up in Philadelphia as a city boy, but at heart he was always a country boy. He loved being in the outdoors. He learned on his own, over time, all about camping, survival, hiking and spelunking. At an early age he left home to be out on his own. Most jobs that he took on then were in the outdoors. One that was especially enjoyable was dredging for crabs on a 2 masted schooner in the Delaware Bay. It was hard work, but he loved sailing and that made it worth it. He used to say that on Friday nights they would “roll down their rubber boots and head into town to go dancing” after a hard week’s work on the water. He so loved to talk about those times! When Bob was just 18, he felt strongly about serving his country and joined the Army National Guard. While training at Fort Dix, near New Jersey, he met his future wife, Arlene White. But with WWII in full force, Bob was deployed to the Island of Bora Bora in the South Pacific. This location was set up as a depot for the ships involved in the part of the war w/Japan. The ships came here for all the supplies/repairs needed. There were 8 Antiaircraft guns(cannons) on the island and Bob was a gunner while there. He spent over 3 years in the South Pacific on Bora Bora and the Solomon Islands during the war. He received several commendations. During that time, he and Arlene had been writing back and forth as best as they could during the war, and when he returned to the states, they married in 1945. They resided in Rochester (Gates), New York and raised 3 girls: Martha, Patricia and Barbara. Our family did a lot of fun things together like camping, hiking, vacationing and community involvement. He helped the girls with school projects and even participated in one of our talent shows! He also took classes and became a school bus driver at our school for a while. Bob always enjoyed working with his hands. You would find him creating paper mâché puppets, building a Dulcimer, building miniature doll furniture, making a fife and he even diddled with wood carving too. In his later years, after he developed Alzheimer’s, he had a few of his simple paintings entered into the Memories in the Making auctions, which is a fine arts program for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. It is a creative way for them to communicate their feelings. They framed them for him and one of them was chosen as the signature piece for the auction in 2012. Bob loved to go fishing and he took off with the guys whenever he could. He also taught himself about archery hunting for deer and learned to enjoy that tremendously. He would go all out with the apple spray, camo and even made his own arrows. He didn’t have a lot of luck with harvesting deer, but he so enjoyed just being out there in nature. He was involved in community activities as well. He was in some “minstrel” shows for fundraising, he and his family were participants in the Gates Sesquicentennial – making a covered wagon for the girls to ride in during the parade, men’s beard competition and volunteered at the church. He always was ready to help with anything needed. Bob enjoyed helping others so much that he took classes and became a Volunteer Paramedic and driver at the Gates Volunteer Ambulance Service. This was something dear to his heart because he just loved helping others. He put in many hours there. Bob was a character! His good nature and laid-back humorous personality was a magnet for anyone who knew him. He had the best outlook on life – even when he developed Alzheimer’s in his 80’s. It didn’t matter what the circumstances, if you asked him how he was, he would say “Well, I’m alive and breathing – they tell me that’s a good sign! It’s a great day!” And whenever he thanked you, he would say “Maruru, Danke Shoen”. Maruru was “thank you” he learned from the natives on Bora Bora – not sure why he said the German version also, but he always did! Bob never gave you a straight answer – always kidding around. He was always making a positive out of any negative and was just a fun person to be around. No matter how bad a mood you could be in, when you were done visiting with him, you came away in a great mood – he had that effect on people! Bob spent his last 6 years or so going to a great place, Elder Haus in Fort Collins. This is where he became involved in the Memories in the Making art program. He would go there during the week and spend quality time socializing and going on field trips with the great folks who cared for him there. They so loved him and took such great care of him during the day. They were like a second family to him and he to them. At the end of the day he would come home to his family. He definitely still had a great quality of life in those last years despite the Alzheimer’s that slipped up on him. When he didn’t remember something, he would say his memory isn’t as good as it used to be, so we would remind him that he had Alzheimer’s and he would just smile and say “they should just shoot that Alzheimer guy!” Then he would start laughing! Bob is preceded in death by his parents Charles and Anna Jacker, his ex-wife Arlene, Betty (sister), Walter (brother), Ferdinand (brother), James (brother) and Anna (sister). Bob is survived by Martha Robinson (daughter), Patricia and Dave Robinson (daughter) and Barbara and Robert Katz (daughter). He also has 7 Grandchildren, 11 Great Grandchildren and 2 Great Great Grandchildren. Bob will be missed by not only his family, who love him dearly, but also by so many friends that were lucky enough to know him and experience his uplifting personality that was so contagious!
Please send flowers C/O Melanie at 8985 W. Euclid Ave
Littleton, CO 80123