|Born:||October 2, 1942
|Died:||October 10, 2010
ROBERT GRAHAM KEESLER
Robert G. Keesler died on October 10, 2010 at age 68. Robert or "Bob" fought a long and courageous 17 year battle with Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma, a very rare form of cancer.
Robert was born on October 2, 1942 in Paterson, New Jersey. When Robert was six months old his parents moved to Aruba, Netherlands Antilles. He enjoyed growing up in Lago Colony and enjoying the beaches and bike riding all around the colony. Robert was in the class of 1960 until the family moved to Amuay Bay and Maracaibo, Venezuela, where Robert learned to speak fluent Spanish.
After returning to the United States, Robert attended the University of Tampa and the University of South Florida where he graduated with a degree in Business Management in 1973. After graduation, he worked for Tampa Electric Company. He later worked for Southeast Bank, Barclays Bank and Diners Club. In later life, he worked for Consumer Credit Counseling Services in Miami. In his spare time, Bob was a member of the Tampa Jaycees, a coach for the Wellswood Little League and involved in fund raising for the McDonald Training Center for children with special needs. He also ran for the Florida State House of Representatives in the late 1980's and achieved 44% of the vote.
Robert was always interested in sports cars and car racing. He attended the races in Sebring, Florida for the last 20 years. He owned a Triumph and several Nissan sports cars. He enjoyed life and loved to eat in the best restaurants. Robert also loved cruises, he went on several cruises per year. He covered the entire Caribbean, Panama and the Hawaiian Islands. He and his wife Mary went on 17 cruises together.
Robert is survived by his wife of 20 years Mary Keesler who resides in Dunedin, Florida, his daughter Gerene Keesler of Tampa, Florida, his son Robert Keesler, Jr. of Tampa, a step daughter Lorilee Bell of Tampa, Florida and his brother Gene B. Keesler of St. Petersburg, Florida. He also is survived by four grand-children Brittany, Caitlyn and Corey Keesler of Tampa and Haylee Graham of Tampa, Florida and cousins Kathy 'KK' Kennedy Steinorth of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Matthew Kennedy of SpringHill, FL, Alice Lull of Southport, North Carolina, Randy Keesler of Washington, DC and Joe Lardino of Ocala, Florida and his great friend Joe Stephens of Lakeland, FL.
A Celebration of Life Ceremony will be held for Robert at a date to be announced later. Condolences can be sent to his wife Mary at 250 Lyndhurst Street, Dunedin, FL 34698 or to his brother Gene at [email protected]
Memorabilia (audio, video, files, documents, etc.)
This does not seem possible to actually say goodbye. Dad you taught me so many things about courage never giving up in your fight to get healthy and strong. You taught me about self-confidence and believing I can do anything despite any barriers. Minute to minute I think I can travel this world without you, but the loss is so overwhelming I cannot breathe. You were not only my dad but my friend. I will miss and love you every day but am glad Aunt Norene is there to hold your hand. We will all hold on to each other.
Brother Bob as much as you liked the sport of football, I am adding this picture to the message. You were a sports fan all your life to include car racing, golf and boating. You lived life to the fullest and enjoyed every minute of it. You were an expert on good restaurants and an authority on good cruises to take. Now you have joined our little sister Norene in Heaven. We will miss you and think of you every day until we meet again. Thanks for being such a good brother to me. We send our love to you. May God Bless You and Shine His Face Upon You.
Gene Keesler, Brother
Uncle Bob has embarked on a cruise ship in the Heavens. May he rest from this Earth as he joins his favorite sis' Aunt Norene...Bob you were a very loved father, husband, brother,uncle and friend. Will miss your kind soul Uncle B
I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of Robert. I remember meeting Robert several years ago at an Aruba Reunion in Tampa. He was a lovely, charming man. I was in the Class of 1962, and, he didn't remember me. I told him that I remembered that he lived near the Youth Canteen and he used to ride his bike right up next to the girls and come to a screeching stop while everyone screamed. He was always very tan and had wavy, sun-bleached hair. I know that the family left Aruba before Robert graduated, but I remembered him very clearly. I think my brother, Matt, was in Norene's class. Matt lives in St. Petersburg, and I now live in Tampa. I'll keep all of you in my prayers.
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