Robert G. StarszakSeptember 13, 1932 ~ November 10, 2017 (age 85)
Robert G. Starszak “Bob”, “Dad”, “Grandpa”, “Bobby”, “The Old Guy”, “Pa”, “Crabby Bob”, “Buddy”, age 85, passed away peacefully with his family by his side at St. Elizabeth Hospital on November 10, 2017.
Robert is survived by his wife Gloria; his son Bruce (Karen) Starszak, Marion WI; his daughter Cynthia (Mark) Sanders, Appleton, son Brian (Ellen) Starszak, Appleton, Deb Wentz (partner of daughter Barbara Starszak), Appleton, daughter Caren Starszak, Appleton and son Christopher Starszak, Combined Locks.
He is preceded in death by his father George, mother Marie, sister Marguerite, daughter Barbara Starszak, son David Starszak, granddaughter Catie Houser and great granddaughter Hazel Kleberg.
He was born on September 13th, 1932 in Milwaukee, WI. He graduated from Solomon Juneau High School in Milwaukee in 1951. Later that same year he went to work for General Electric Company, a career which lasted more than 39 years, where he met the love of this life Gloria. Their desks were across from one another. They married in September of 1952 and he was drafted into the Army in December of 1952. He was a Mess Sergeant in Fort Riley, KS. During a physical in November of 1954 he learned he had a heart problem, by January of 1955 he had the first of many surgeries. He was honorably discharged for medical reasons in May 1955. He knew that every extra day and every extra year were a gift. He didn’t think he’d make it to 25 because of his heart, he was thankful to make 50, amazed to make 70. His 82nd birthday was a longtime but bittersweet milestone as it meant he lived longer than his father. At 85, it meant that he would reach the favorite milestone of his life, the 65th wedding anniversary with Gloria. It was his goal, his finish line and his victory lap. He lived a long wonderful life when at times he thought his life would only ever be short.
If you were one of the many fortunate people that knew Bob and you asked him how he was today his response was “I’m crabby”, (even though he really wasn’t). He was the gentleman that you knew that loved to tease you or give you a “hard time”, in his own “Robert” demeanor. He was very knowledgeable on many subjects and willing to help if you needed it. He was a generous man who gave advice, had some great unforgettable “one liners” and had a smile and steel blue eyes that are part of what made him special to so many people.
His greatest love was “Mom” (Gloria) who loved him back dearly, followed by his 7 children, 11 grandchildren: Amy (Paul) Bloch, Molly (Jason) Kleberg, Amanda (Adam) Fredrick, Betsy Gscheidmeier (Jessica Tummett), Ben (Amy) Sanders, Joshua (Melissa) Sanders, Lindsey (Tim) Torbeck, April (Todd) Vosters, David (Karter) Starszak, Christine Houser (fiancé Adam Crail), 21 great grandchildren & 3 children of his grandchildren who he also welcomed into his heart.
He loved family gatherings especially Thanksgiving, when he would have his big turkey drumstick, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes with giblet gravy, and Chris’ homemade rolls. He would want a slice of every kind of pie with extra whipped cream.
He loved to travel and had many fond memories of all the places they’d gone. His fondest memories were the winter months for more than 20 years he and Gloria spent in Gulf Shores, Alabama where he made lifelong “Snowbird” friends.
Robert’s family would like to express special thanks and appreciation to the Nursing Staff at St. Elizabeth hospital – (you are angels) your care and compassion was truly exceptional. God bless you.
In his own words: So what is life really about? It’s to live a long time, have a good wife who takes care of you in sickness & health and kids that listen (sometimes) - God has been good to Gloria & Me – So I say Good Bye & See You Later! ~Bob
P.S. Chris & Caren, Thanks for all your help!
Visitation at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Combined Locks, Saturday, November 18th, 9:30 am until the time of funeral mass at Noon, Father Andrew Kysely will officiate with the assistance of Father Jim Lucas. In lieu of flowers a memorial fund has been established. Boettcher Family Funeral Home, Kaukauna is assisting the family. (920) 766-2099 www.boettcherfamilyfuneral.com