Robert (Bob) Edmund Ward II died Dec. 1, 2019 at home in Clinton, Wash. after a long and courageous battle with cancer.
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Bob was born to parents John G. Ward and Catherine (Tess) Ward on Feb. 22, 1952 in Albuquerque, N.M. He spent his childhood in Albuquerque with his four sisters and brother, moving to Richland, Wash. in the late 1960s. There, he graduated from Richland High School in 1970. He met Becky Ruffcorn in 1973 and they married soon after.
Bob was a talented engineer, earning his associates degree at Columbia Basin College, where he acquired the skills he would use throughout his career in drafting and design engineering. Early in his career, he was employed in the Nuclear Power construction industry where he and his wife Becky moved around the country living in Michigan, North Carolina, Arizona and California.
After the arrival of their three children, Bob and Becky fell in love with Whidbey Island, where they decided to settle down on Maxwelton Beach to raise their family. Bob commuted to Seattle, where he worked for over 40 years in his field, culminating with King County as a supervisor in the Department of Waste Water Management.
Bob was an avid patron of the arts, through which he and Becky attended countless concerts over the years. He also loved music festivals (a passion he shares, especially, with his oldest son, Rob) and continued to grow his eclectic musical tastes, keeping up with the hippest of artists and bands. He enjoyed the theater (a special bond he shared with his daughter, Melody) and donated regularly to both the 5th Avenue Theatre and STG. Bob was a skilled guitarist and enjoyed building and collecting acoustic and electric guitars. He also loved sports (a pastime he and his youngest son, Ian were both particularly fond of) and loved his yearly pilgrimage with his boys to the NCAA March Madness tournament. Bob had a bellowing laugh and a brilliant sense of humor.
Bob could, and would, do anything around the house and never had to pay a plumber, electrician, carpenter or architect. Less than a week prior to his passing he was working on a multitude of projects around the house.
His children, Melody, Robert (Rob) and Ian, were the source of his greatest pride and joy. The addition of his best buddy and first grandchild, Beau, brought new meaning to the word love in his final years.
Bob was preceded in death by his sister, Gina; mother, Tess; and father, John. He is survived by his loving wife, Becky Ward; daughter, Melody Ward (Scott Baxter); sons, Robert Ward III and Ian Ward (Bindhu); grandson, Beau Baxter; sisters, Lisa Spreacker (Jerry Whiting), Jana Ward and Mari Hanson (Mark); brother, John Ward (Joneen); and many nieces and nephews.
Bob danced to the beat of his own drum. He was a powerful force in the lives of all who knew him and he will be terribly missed.
The family wishes to thank the wonderful, skilled nurses from Whidbey Hospice, especially Erica and Myla, for their compassion, comfort and relief at this time of need.
There will be a service held in February; details to follow. No donations are requested at this time, however we encourage you to go to a concert, visit the theatre, or go to a Hawks game. Live your life with the passion that Bob showed us up until his final days.