July 12, 2021 - August 26, 2021
Robert Dean Robens, aka: Bob Robens, age 84 of Phoenix, AZ passed away peacefully in hospice care at Eckstein Center in Scottsdale, AZ on August 26th, 2021 at 1:45 pm from cancer and urosepsis. Robert (Bob) Robens is survived by his brother, William J. Robens Jr. (Kathryn), his sisters, Kathy Robens-Goldman (David), Susan Robens, his seven children, Teresa Moedl (Karl), Paula O’Neil (Kelly), Denise Osborne (Kyle), Dean Robens (Cindy), Mark Robens (Louise), Jeff Robens (Mery), Brittany Fermic (Becir) and numerous cousins, nephews, nieces, grand children and great grand children. He was preceded in death by his parents, William James Robens and Evelyn Gertrude (Fuhrer) Robens and his sister, Christine Robens-Ning (Jimmie). Bob Robens was born in Toledo, Ohio on July 12th, 1937. His family moved often and lived not only in several homes and farms in Ohio, but in many homes in Nevada, Washington, Texas, New Mexico, Illinois, California and Arizona. He lived his last 38 years of his life in the Phoenix, Arizona area. Bob Robens graduated from Highland High School in Albuquerque, NM and from the University of New Mexico in psychology and he attained a MBA while working at E.F. Hutton & Co Brokerage Firm. He was a stock broker and financial advisor for E.F. Hutton in Albuquerque, NM, La Jolla, CA and in Phoenix, AZ. Bob was also a commodities broker working at the Chicago Board of Trades in Chicago, Illinois. After his time at E.F. Hutton, he was a self-employed independent contractor and worked up to almost the very end of his life. Robert (Bob) Robens was cremated at the Meldrum Mortuary in Mesa, AZ and his final resting place is at Double Butte Cemetery in Tempe, AZ. If anyone wants to share any memories or words of comfort for Bob’s family, please visit the website for Meldrum Mortuary listed as follows: www.meldrummortuary.com The families’ final prayer for Robert (Bob) Robens is: Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him; May he rest in peace, love always, in the name of Jesus and in His loving care, Amen Eulogy for Robert Dean Robens, aka: Bob Robens by his brother, William J. Robens Jr., aka: Bill Robens, “Uncle Bill” Early on in Ohio Bob Robens was my only sibling from 1937 to 1950. Because of that, we had a unique relationship. We were not only brothers—we were best friends. He was 16 months younger and only one grade behind me in school. We lived much of that life, not in a city or town, but on a farm. We had no TV, only a radio with a limited reception range. When not in school, we were on our own to develop and pursue activities. The closest male classmates all lived a considerable distance (2-3 miles or more) from our farmhouse. So, we spent a good deal of time only with each other—playing 2-person games of football, baseball or basketball; wandering in the nearby fields or “woods” or playing cards or parlor games such as Parcheesi or Monopoly. We were constant companions and best friends. As farm boys, we also helped out at home and for our grandparents who lived nearby. At home we mowed the very large lawn with a 12” mower, did the dishes, brought coal up from the basement, emptied the ashes and did a dozen other routine chores required in an old house with no running water and with an outdoor toilet. When staying with our grandparents on their farm (which was often) we arose at 5:30, and often side-by-side we would bring the cows in from pasture or barnyard to be milked, “slop” the hogs, gather eggs from the hen-house, pitch hay as needed and perform other routine chores. In the summertime we lived several weeks with our Fuhrer grandparents and routinely worked several hours each day in the fields and in the barn alongside our uncles. Work was not really a “chore” — it was a way of life. We carried our weight at home, with our grandparents and with our neighbors. We were the “Robens Boys” and we were proud of it. I was also, always, Bob’s older brother. Dad told me early on, probably in the 2nd grade, that on the playground if people should “pick on” Bob, that I should come to his defense. And I did. So our relationship began that way, and in some ways, remained that way for many years. In El Paso and Albuquerque schools We moved to El Paso when Bob was in the 7th grade. We walked to school, which was about a mile away. It was a major transition to move from an Ohio farm to a city surrounded by people, traffic and homes. Our circle of friends expanded and we could now play organized sports. Bob was a very good athlete, always one of the best in his class. He was also one of the 2-3 fastest runners. At Ascarate Elementary School, in the 7th and 8th grade, he was a sprinter on the track team and played “flag” football and softball. I remember watching from the stands when I was in high school and Bob was in the 8th grade, at the regional elementary school track championships, he was 1 of the 2 runners representing Ascarate in the 100 yard dash. He got off to a perfect start and had the lead until he turned around to see where the other runners were, and he got passed in the final 10 yards. Still, he came in 2nd place among 6 schools in the district. He was fast. We went to nearby Ysleta High School, which was probably Bob’s favorite all-time school. As a freshman, he was voted Class Favorite among the boys. The caption under the full-page picture of him and Ellen Bennett, the girl “favorite”, reads: “To the tip top of their class, Bob Robens and Teena Bennett have climbed. As though the rungs were a friendly smile, a cheering word or a helping hand, they have met each one with enthusiasm. What they have is what it takes to be a favorite!” Bob also played freshman football and ran track at Ysleta. He was not only well-liked, he was a good student and a good athlete. He always said that his year at Ysleta was one of his favorite all-time years. He did not like his move to Albuquerque, nor did he particularly like Highland High School. He remained a good student, however, and he played football and ran track, but he never achieved what he could have. In part, as he would have told you, because he was not really given a chance—and he had really bad luck. At any other high school in New Mexico, he would have lettered in track. Highland High, however, probably had the 5-6 fastest runners in the state—and speed was Bob’s specialty. Through all of our years growing up, we shared a bedroom and we shared our thoughts, ideas and dreams. We remained “best friends” even though we each had very many good friends. We separated When Bob was a senior in high school, I was at UNM. We roomed together still, at our home on McKnight, but we were separated both physically and academically—and our truly great relationship took a hit as we pursued very different agendas—our love for each other did not. That separation, however, I believe was a reason we went on such different ways—and Bob chose a very different path almost immediately. During his senior year, or shortly thereafter, Bob fell in love with a girl named Helen Kerrigan. He got to know her as she had been dating my best friend, but my friend secured an appointment to the Navy Academy, and left New Mexico. I had double-dated with he and Helen many times and likely knew her better than Bob, originally. One evening, in our bedroom on McKnight, Bob told me he was in love with Helen, and that he was going to ask her to marry him. I said something like: “No no, you are both too young! You need to go to college first.” As usual, he paid little attention to me and soon thereafter, Bob and Helen got married. And as relatives know, that marriage lasted several years, then was abandoned by my brother. An act which he told me many years later, that he greatly regretted. I was always very fond of Helen and was glad to be able to keep in touch with her for many years, and to later come to know Dick Stach. From Bob’s relationship with Helen, however, came Teresa, Paula, Denise and Dean. All wonderful, high quality human beings who I love very much. And then ... I lost track of Bob on a close personal basis around 1960 as I got married, went into the navy in San Diego and pursued my own career as a Civil Engineer in California when I got out of the Navy in 1962. We would see each other from time-to-time for many years as we led our separate lives. It was always a pleasure to visit with him and we had many great discussions, deep into the evening hours. But there were also times when we would go maybe 2-3 years, without seeing each other at all. I know that he started out working and managing in bowling alleys, that he attended UNM and came very close to getting degrees in mathematics and psychology (or so he told me), that he got into the stock market business, that he divorced Helen (and his kids), and that he remarried. I know that he was successful for many years as a broker and Wall Street executive and made lots of money. I also know that he lost a ton of money on a very bad investment and that he and his second wife got divorced, which Bob wanted, but which further devastated him financially and emotionally. (There is more to that story, but this is neither the time nor the place to discuss it.) Bob’s children and many others knew Bob much better than me from sometime after I left New Mexico until today. I know that he has told me several times that he made many mistakes in his life, and on occasion, he enumerated those mistakes. On two occasions in later years, that I can recall, after talks deep into the night, I advised him to make amends with Helen and “kids.” I don’t know that he was ever able to do it—but I hope he did. I know he wanted to. I am personally very sad to be delivering this “eulogy.” Even though we went our separate ways, I never stopped loving him. With me he was almost always straight forward and honest, and when I thought he was something else—I usually called him on it. Most of the time, he agreed. In some ways I remained his “older brother” until the end. Recollections of my brother, Bob. By Kathy Robens Bob had an easy smile and was always comfortable in his skin. I am 14 years younger than Bob. When we all lived in the same house on McKnight Street, at age 4, I jumped on his bed to “wake him up” – he never threw me across the room (Bless him); he took me to my Blue Birds Father/Daughter dinner and pretended to be my Dad; I was proud and so happy he made the time to take me to this important event. When we left the parking lot that night, he couldn’t find the driveway so drove over the curb! At one time, I got to sit his lap so I could “steer the car” on a small dirt road, I think I was probably 6 or so. This is Bob. At age 10, I was in a bowling league with Sultana and Andy (Marianne) at San Mateo Lanes when Bob was the manager – we were all so proud and felt very special. Later that year, Bob and I stood in the front yard on Aztec Road while he painstakingly taught me to correctly hold and swing a golf club. When he drove me home after babysitting Teresa, Paula, Denise, and Dean a few years later he kept the top of his red sports car down in the middle of winter, it was such a treat. When he visited Mom when we lived briefly on Moon Street at age 13, he beamed when he told her that he had received the second highest score in the US on his stockbroker exam. This is Bob. In New York, he invited me to have breakfast with him at the Plaza hotel once when he was in town. He was proud of his success as a stockbroker and felt supported. When my then husband, Jeff and I flew through LA en route to somewhere, Bob drove to the airport to meet us for an hour or two. He drove all night to be at our sister Chris’ bedside as she neared her death. He loved our Mom and at her 96th birthday celebration showered her with admiration and talked about the many, many, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, etc. that by her existence was made possible. I never heard Bob disparage any member of our family. Ever. This is Bob. My sample of my time with Bob creates a pattern of his best self – while Bob’s life was always a bit of a mystery, he was extremely bright, caring, and gentle. I never heard him raise his voice and have many memories of him listening first, then sharing his thoughts, second. I loved my big brother and will miss him and his brightness. I hope Mom and Chris find him to give him a big, loving hug. “Eulogy for Robert Dean Robens, aka: “Bob”, “Dad” by Teresa Moedl When Bob was living with us, when we were very young, as our Dad, when I was about 8 years old, Paula was 7, Denise was 6 and Dean was 4 years old, when we lived at the Morris house, he took the time to read out of this very large, gold covered, Catholic Bible with a painting of Mary and baby Jesus on the front cover. Dad read from it a few Sundays in a row and he had all four of us children sitting in front of him at his feet as he sat in a chair with the large, gold Bible in his lap. He read from the beginning of Genesis to end of the story of Moses. That was as far as he read and it resulted in a tremendous impact on our lives that followed us into life changing events. Great Grandma Brown also lived with us at the Morris house when she had Alzheimer’s just before she went into assisted living. She slept in Dean’s bedroom at which time Dean slept in our bedroom. I remember Grandma Brown being a sweet, elderly and very frail woman who sat quietly tying knots in regular sewing thread and then untying the knots just by using the touch of her fingers because she didn’t see very well. Grandma Brown also would talk about candy and peanut brittle that we could get from Aunt Henrietta that was homemade. Of course, being young children, we thought this to be true because we believed everything that adults told us, but our Mom, Helen, said that these were just memories that Great Grandma Brown had that she was sharing with us. Anyway the day came when Grandma Brown went to the assisted living facility and didn’t live with us anymore. Dean, being only 4 or 5 years old, was so very young and he was anxious about sleeping in his bedroom after Grandma Brown moved out. So we placed this large, gold covered, Bible on a small, pale-green bookcase in his room to give Dean comfort for when he went to sleep. I remember praying in front of that Bible when we had things that concerned us. I remember praying when Dad and Mom got divorced. I remember praying for Dean when he got hit by a car at 6 years old, shortly after that. Thank God, Dean was ok from that accident, just a few bruises and scratches. I remember that day very well and praying in front of that Bible on top of the pale-green bookcase gave me divine peace that Dean would be ok. When we were young children, we didn’t receive formal Christian education and only went to church maybe two Easter Sundays and maybe once on Christmas Eve. We did celebrate both Greek Easter and Roman Catholic Easter with Papou and Grandma Viola and always had special Christmas breakfasts and Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners with our Grandparents. But there was no formal Christian education. One time I was quite concerned about our family and I stepped into the St. Bernadette Catholic Church in our neighborhood to pray for our family. I walked into the church and noticed all of the Saints on the wall, but didn’t recognize or know any of them. I knew to dip my finger into the holy water and to do the sign of the cross but didn’t quite understand why I did this. I saw a large cross at the front of the church and decided in my child-like understanding that because it was the largest item at the church and it was placed at the front of the church that it must be the most important and best place to pray for my family and that is what I did. Later on in my teenage years, Paula, Denise and I, became good friends with Yvette, Louella and Roxanne Montoya, all sisters just like us and in the same grades as us. They were from a strong Catholic family who attended St. Bernadette Church. We attended other churches with them also and we began to grow in our Christian understanding. We learned about what Jesus did for us on the cross, recognized our sinful ways, asked Jesus to forgive us and we believe that Jesus died for us on the cross, that Jesus is our Savior and we will go to Heaven. Dean also found Jesus through one of his high school football friends, David Sanchez, so all of us four children became Christians in our teenage years. Our Mom, Helen, and our Dad, Dick, became Christians after they saw the wonderful change in Dean, so we know that our Mom is in Heaven now with Jesus. The other important memory that I need to mention is that when our Grandpa Bill Robens was in a coma right before he passed away, Paula, Denise, Dean and I all went and prayed for Grandpa Bill when he was in the hospital and unresponsive. We didn’t know if Grandpa Bill believed in Jesus or not. He never woke up when we were all praying for him, circled around his hospital bed, hand in hand. We prayed for him to be a believer in Jesus and that he would be in Heaven. Like I said, he didn’t respond while we were there and we left not knowing about his faith. Miraculously, Grandpa Bill woke up one last time just before he passed away, to tell his wife, Mary Lou, that he heard his grandchildren praying for him and heard us pray for him to believe in Jesus. Grandpa Bill’s last words to Mary Lou were, “Please tell my grandchildren that I do believe in Jesus as my Savior and I know that I am going to Heaven.” Mary Lou shared this with me at Grandpa Bill’s funeral service in front of his gravesite. Such wonderful news to hear that Grandpa Bill is in Heaven!! I shared this with our Dad, Bob, because he needed to hear this good news about his Dad being in Heaven because he wasn’t able to attend his funeral and it would give him peace and comfort. I also shared the memory to Dad of him reading to us out of the large, gold covered Bible when we were young children and told him thank you for planting the seed of Jesus in us because it resulted in us becoming Christians. Whenever Bob, our Dad, visited us, sporadically over the years, about once a decade, for a few hours at a time, we talked to him about our faith in Jesus, about our families, let him know that we forgave him and showed him that we cared and loved him unconditionally, in spite of the past. That is what Jesus wanted us to do and I believe we did that. We had a great reunion in December of 2019 where Dad’s children, 6 out of 7 of us met for the 1st time. You see Dad had 7 children from different women and wasn’t really much of a father to us, but his final wish was for all of his children to finally all meet. Jeff, and his wife, Mery, and their daughter, Fuschia, flew to Phoenix from Japan and were celebrating Fuschia’s birthday. Paula, Denise and Dean drove from Albuquerque to Tucson, where they met Karl, my husband, and me to drive up to Phoenix. Brittany and her husband, Ben (Becir) and their four children already live in Phoenix and they all arrived as one big happy family. Mark, from Northern California, had to work and couldn’t make it to the reunion, but Mark was able to FaceTime me to pass on a message to Dad and the rest of us that he wished he could have attended and sent his good wishes. The rest of us enjoyed a large banquet of Mexican food and a huge chocolate cake in Phoenix, Arizona with Dad. It was a very joyful occasion and I know it made our Dad very happy to see us all finally together. Dad received his final wish and all of his children are now unified and together, communicating often with one another, in person, via cell phone, texting, messenger and Facebook. In some way, we believe that Dad was making some effort to reconnect with his children toward the end of his life and to mend some fences between us and him. We appreciate his efforts and only regret that he hadn’t made these efforts much sooner. He missed out on our wonderful family, he barely knew his own children, never really met his grand children and definitely didn’t know his great grand children. For this, I am truly sad because we are very much blessed with a marvelous and very stable family that are artistic, productive, intelligent, loving and strong in Christian faith. When Bob, our Dad, was in comfort care in hospice, God gave us many rainbows to bring us peace and comfort. Denise saw a rainbow in Albuquerque on Wednesday, August 18th. I saw two rainbows on Thursday, August 19th, one in a Facebook post from a good friend of mine and the other was a full rainbow right outside in front of my Colorado cabin. I saw another rainbow in the sky above the lake near my cabin on Saturday, August 21st. On that Saturday was when Brittany and her two daughters, Jasmine and Abby, visited Dad in his room at the hospice facility to read scriptures to him and to pray with him by his bedside. Also, Dad’s brother, Uncle Bill, and his sister, Aunt Kathy, many of his children, including me, all called in to talk with Dad with the phone by his ear. There was a visit from a pastor that same day and the hospice nurse made sure that Dad had Christian music playing in his room. Following that Saturday, there was a continuance of phone calls from the family, more visits from the pastor and more Christian music playing in Dad’s room. The nurses and staff at the Eckstein Center kept Dad comfortable and resting quietly until he passed peacefully into Heaven on August 26th, 2021 at 1:45 pm. It is my belief that when God’s scriptures are read and delivered to someone that they will not come back void. I believe we witnessed and delivered the message of Jesus to Bob, our Dad, and I also believe that he showed repentance toward the end of his life and tried to make amends. I believe that God sent us many rainbows as some kind of sign to all of us children, that we will see Robert Dean Robens, “Bob”, our Dad, in Heaven. That brings me hope, peace and comfort. May he rest in peace.
Robert Dean Robens, aka: Bob Robens, age 84 of Phoenix, AZ passed away peacefully in hospice care at Eckstein Center in Scottsdale, AZ on August 26th, 2021 at 1:45 pm from cancer and urosepsis. Robert (Bob) Robens is survived by his brother,... View Obituary & Service Information
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