Jan. 17, 1929 - Dec. 7, 2012
ELKHART — Robert A. “Bob” Burkhead, 83, of Elkhart, passed away Friday, Dec. 7, 2012, at Elkhart General Hospital after a short illness.
Bob was born Jan. 17, 1929, in Elkhart to Roy and Aleta (Steinbarger) Burkhead. He married Virginia “Ginny” Schuelke on June 25, 1950.
She survives along with daughter Pam (Clark) Romine of Washington state; son Chris (Anita) Burkhead of Kokomo; grandchildren Karen Youngs, Kim Romine, Amanda Michaels and Zack Burkhead; and five great-grandchildren. He also leaves two sisters, Marilyn Starner and Cathleen Powell; and several nieces and nephews.
His sister, Catherine Hardy, preceded him in death.
Bob was a member of the Elkhart High School class of 1947. He obtained his GED after serving in the U.S. Army from 1945 until his honorable discharge in 1947.
Bob worked as a brickmason with Macumber Construction Co. for 45 years, acting as the superintendent for the last 25 years. Bob was instrumental in starting and heading the apprentice bricklayers program at the Elkhart Area Career Center for 10 years. He was proud to be a 50-year member of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Union Local 4. Bob retired in 1991 and enjoyed woodworking and building grandfather clocks, many of which were his own design.
Bob was an avid pilot. He owned his own plane and enjoyed attending many air shows. Bob’s greatest joys were his family, class reunions, lunches with friends, Sunday morning waffles at the Sunrise Café and a Tanqueray on the rocks.
Friends and family may gather to celebrate Bob’s life from 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, at Billings Funeral Home, where a remembrance service conducted by his friend, Leroy Chaffee, and military honors by the U.S Army Honors detail will conclude the afternoon.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Salvation Army or the Humane Society of Elkhart County.