Obituaries » Robert Charles Whaley
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September 26, 1939 - January 24, 2022
Funeral Home Russon Mortuary Syracuse
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Robert (Bob) passed away in the early hours of Monday morning in his home in Utah.
Bob was born in Morristown, New Jersey. He was the second of 5 siblings born to Robert Charles Whaley Sr, and Beatrice Ann Butera. Being the only boy, he was always quite close to his four sisters, even when he was teasing them (Barbara, Bonnie, Beasie, and Star).
Bob met the love of his life, Carole Forrest, at the first “Bob’s Big Boy” restaurant in Southern California, near his home. They married in Las Vegas February 28, 1965 and then in 1974, they were sealed for eternity with their children in the Los Angeles Temple. Together, Robert and Carole raised 3 children as they worked hard to fill their home with laughter, love, and good memories.
As a child, Robert never tired of keeping pets; squirrels, owls, cats, dogs, & horses. He spent time ice skating, reading, camping, riding and caring for his horses, and participating in the Boy Scouts of America and 4-H. As he grew, some of his interests included; building a kit car with his father, living in Mexico for months and learning the Spanish language, teaching himself the piano, organizing volleyball matches in college, and playing cards and cribbage. From 1977 to 1990 Robert planned annual trips from Arizona to California, taking the family both in summer and winter to visit friends and family.
Robert was consistently coaching High School football teams for most of his adult life. He began attending football conferences as part of his businesses that sold football equipment. From there he fell in love with the game. He studied the game and read every book he could from great coaches. He was especially fascinated with the art and science of offensive play calling. Everyone knew that “Coach Whaley” enjoyed helping the team reach their potential on the playing field. He met wonderful people in the community and gave much of his time and insight.
Bob was involved with the Queen Creek, AZ Chapter of the Kiwanis club, serving children. For a few years he organized the annual Queen Creek Fourth of July celebration and enjoyed watching the community come together. Bob helped the Kiwanis club raise scholarship money for graduating high school students in Queen Creek and Apache Junction. He knew there was a need for the scholarships and looked for ways to serve the community and encourage students to further their education.
As an Active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints since his 20’s Robert served in the Boy Scouts of America, as an instructor in the Men’s High Priests Group, and as a faithful home teacher/minister. He often volunteered to coach the church young softball and volleyball teams.
Bob was well known for his ability to help companies achieve their goals in sales. He worked in construction, sales, marketing, management, and income property. He was a great example of saving his money and investing it when needed. He had set a goal at age 40 to build his own home and own it without debt. While he worked a full-time job during the day, he built his house in the evenings and on the weekends all the while teaching his family the art of construction. This provided him with great joy and provided his family with the foundation for its strength and solidarity.
Robert was a wonderful husband and father. Instead of yelling at the family when late for a meeting or a commitment, Bob sat at the piano and played many songs until people were in the car ready to go. This was his way of telling the family to “hurry up” without a shout. He was well known for his “Freddie KeeKee Bug” and “Jack and Bill” bedtime stories for his kids, which were a tradition passed down from his father. His ability to create a story about a flying, “KeeKee Bug” or about two boys named “Jack and Bill” camping in the White Mountains, established love and gratitude for family and being together. Robert built bookshelves to support his library of classics and favorite reads. He loved watching the family come together and always had a funny family story to share or a humorous joke to make everyone laugh. His ability to paint pictures with his words made everyone in the family excited to hear his stories, anytime he was willing to share.
Robert’s love for his wife and children inspired a life of service. Without hesitation he helped his three children serve full-time church missions and he wrote letters often to help them feel loved and supported. The family loved receiving his big bear hugs and he was always excited to ask us how we were doing in life.
Robert often spoke of the need for us to be forgiving. He would say that there is no room for contention in our lives and that we should avoid burning bridges. Forgiveness truly does bring peace and will always help live healthier and have a more worthwhile quality of life.
It had been said more than once that “Carole was Bob’s saving grace.” They set many goals together and accomplished them. Bob would always make creative anniversary and birthday cards; which Carole would proudly display. To this day, handmade gifts and cards are loved and appreciated by all members of the family. They promised to always find humor in difficulties and spoke of counting their blessings often.
Robert and Carole’s Children:
Robert Alec Whaley (Sheila)- Mesa, Arizona Bradley Delivan Whaley (Lisa)-Gilbert, Arizona Dianne Katherine Adams (Mark)- Syracuse, Utah
Robert’s Surviving Siblings:
Beatrice Ann “Beasie” Whaley – Montrose, Colorado Star Brewer- Hesperia, California
The family wishes to thank caring neighbors, friends, church members, and medical professions (Atlas Hospice) for all of their kindness and support.
Friends and family may attend and visit a Family Memorial for Robert on Saturday February 19th 10:30 a.m. at the LDS Church building 1150 West Combs Rd. San Tan Valley, AZ
A Zoom link will be made available for those of you who have expressed an interest