But did you know that he enjoys surfing at La Jolla Shores and hiking in Death Valley? “I’ve got a long board, 9-foot-8-inches, and I only go out in the water a couple of times each summer,” said Bob. “But, since 1996, I’ve gone nearly every year to Death Valley, sometimes twice a year, for five or seven days. My favorite time is October during a full moon. The desert lights up at night, it’s hard to get lost.”
While hiking in Death Valley National Park, Bob has stayed at the Barker Ranch, an infamous site known as the last hideout of murderer Charles Manson following his gruesome Los Angeles murder spree. “You need a four-wheeler or motorcycle to get there,” Bob said. “I saw the bathroom cabinet where the sheriffs found him hiding.”
Bob and wife Gracie also enjoy traveling. They met at Mission Valley Christian Fellowship. They go on cruises together and went to Hawaii in May. Bob also has been to Israel four times and has attended the highly-popular “Footsteps of Jesus” and “Footsteps of Moses” tours. “Once you go to the Holy Land, you’re never the same, there’s such a peace that you feel there,” said Bob. “On the Moses tour, we wanted to go to Midian, the place where Moses hid after he fled from Egypt, but it required crossing into Saudi Arabia. When the Saudis heard that we were a group of Christians, they said no way.”
Bob was born in Los Angeles but raised on a farm in Fremont, Mich. “I lived on the farm from age 4 to 18,” said Bob. “We had about 120 acres where we milked about 65 cows daily and raised 8,000 chickens. Once a year, when they chickens were old enough, we would sell several thousand of them to Kentucky Fried Chicken.”
After graduating from high school, Bob returned to Los Angeles in 1963 to work for International Telephone and Telegraph, a phone company. “For a customer who lived in Beverly Hills, I unintentionally disconnected a phone line and I had to call him to explain that we would fix the problem,” said Bob. “I didn’t tell him that I was the guilty person, but the man’s voice sounded familiar. Later I found it that it was Walt Disney.”
Bob later returned to Michigan and, in 1975, he opened a Farmers Insurance office in Muskegon. After 10 years, he sold the brokerage and relocated to Chula Vista to open another Farmers Insurance office. Today, his office is in Mission Valley. Bob and Gracie live in Chula Vista.
“It was the early 1990s when I first joined our Association,” said Bob. “I admire PSAR a lot because it is well-organized and all the people are really nice. I’m not going to retire ever because I like the people I work with. I’m honored for the opportunity to serve as a PSAR Affiliate Director. I feel the board is great, but I have some ideas that will make us even better.”