If you're reading this, Bob wants you to know Rudolph will be safe this Christmas because after 76 years of serving his family and community, Robert "Bob" Joseph House, 76, of Twining, Mich., transitioned to his eternal Home.
Robert was born July 18, 1939 in Highland Park, Mich., the son of the late Merle "Jack" House and Edith nee Fenton House.
At age 17, Robert left home with his mother's signed consent and joined the U.S. Navy, where he earned his GED and spent four years aboard the U.S.S. Forrestal, serving his country.
Upon his return home from duty, he met and married his bubbly wife, Barbara Sypniewski, who preceded him in death in 2005. Together, the young couple raised four daughters, Susan, Nancy, Katherine and Roberta.
With a budding family, Robert worked wherever he could to support his family, many times working two and three jobs before he finally gained employment with General Motors and Detroit Diesel Allison as a machine repair journeyman. In 1977, Robert transferred to Bay City Chevrolet, and he and Barbara moved their three youngest children from Garden City to Twining where they purchased 40 acres and were able to fulfill their dream of owning a farm and raising animals.
In 1993 Robert retired from GM, and spent winters traveling with his wife to Bradenton, Fla. Robert was active in his community, serving for more than two decades for the Twining-Mason-Turner Fire Department. The fire department was Robert's post-retirement passion. He served as chief for several years and continued to volunteer, manning the Pumper Truck, until his passing. Robert was also a reserve police officer for the cities of Detroit and Garden City.
When he wasn't tinkering with fire engines or answering emergency radio calls, Robert would spend time in his high-tech woodshop, creating beautiful furniture, engraved signs, and heartfelt tokens for his family and friends. Robert also enjoyed hunting, fishing, genealogy and antiquing. He also absolutely loved spending time with his six prized grandchildren, Matthew, Stephanie, Danielle, Eric, Victoria, Lance and dogs, Clover (deceased) and Colby. Robert had an acute sense of humor and a quick wit, always playing pranks on someone at the least expected moment. Although he had a stern disposition at times, his heart was always golden and he would lend a helping hand to anyone in need.
Robert leaves behind his daughters, Susan (Daniel) Nickels, of Farmington Hills, Nancy (Marvin) Selle, of Au Gres, Katherine Martin, of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Roberta House-Forshee, of Au Gres; grandchildren, Matthew (Mallary) Nickels, Stephanie (Andrew) Barbera, Danielle (Peter) Deacon, Eric Martin, Victoria Selle and Lance Selle; great-grandchildren, Weston Nickels and Raegan Nickels; brothers-in-law, Michael and Robert Sypniewski; and many nieces, nephews and friends. Besides his wife of 44 years, Barbara, Robert was preceded in death by his parents Merle House and Edith House; half-sister, Betty Gill; and son-in-law, Jon "Tyler" Forshee.
Per Robert's wishes, cremation has taken place. A graveside memorial service with military honors and fire department "last call" will be held at 11 a.m., Thursday, July 14 at Cedar Valley Cemetery, Twining.
It would fulfill Robert's final wishes if memorial donations were made to the Twining-Mason-Turner Fire Department, Arenac County Counsel on Aging, or Compassus Hospice.
The family would also like to extend heartfelt gratitude to the staff at Eden Fields, Standish, who went above and beyond to provide compassionate and supportive care to our Father and Grandfather.
"How you doin' Dad?"
Until we meet again...
“So sorry for your loss.I one only has to know his children to know that he was a good man... our .condolences to all of you.....”
— Dick and Sherry Jackson
“Thank you for all the great memories and the times you spent with our girls as they were growing up.. You will be greatly missed. In our hearts forever...”
— David and Tracy Fitzgerald
“Who new,all those many years ago, when I sold you the farm, that we would become good friends and you and Barb would adopt my parent's like they were your own. They loved your whole family. RIP Our dear friend . We will meet again.”
— Dick & Sandy Coztanzo
“So sorry girls for you loss. I know you have many fond memories of your dad, keep them in mind during this time. He is with your mom now. ”
— Fran Long
“My heartfelt condolences at hearing of your Father's passing. Bob was a great guy and I always enjoyed talking with him. He will be greatly missed.”
— Dan Nagy
“So sorry to hear of your loss. Prayers and blessings to you all.”
— Brent Baker