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Robert Lawrence Lesher, Sr.

September 7, 1939 ~ November 27, 2018 (age 79)

Robert Lawrence Lesher, fondly known as Bob to many, died November 27, 2018, following a very sudden and fatal series of medical issues.

Born September 7, 1939, he was the son of Benjamin Richard and Pearl Mae Lesher in San Diego, CA.  It is said that shortly after his birth, his parents proudly took their new son to a cloistered convent where they had developed a relationship with the nuns.  They placed him on a turntable and spun him around to meet them all.

He attended school in San Diego, CA   His junior high school, Roosevelt,  is still in operation next door to the San Diego Zoo. At Mount Miguel High School, his favorite classes were shop and mechanics at which he excelled.  He graduated from there in 1958.

His love of building airplane models led him to seek employment in aeronautics.  He became an Industrial Engineer, managing the Methods and Facilities Layout Group at Teledyne-Ryan Aeronautical.  Among his projects were:  BQM-34 Arial target drones, the AH-64 Apache Helicopter, Atlas Missile silos, and many others.

In 1975, he attended a Catholic Cursillo event that changed his entire life.  He became deeply committed to God and maintained that relationship throughout the rest of his life.  Over the years, he belonged to a variety of organizations and was President of the Management Club for several years.  He joined groups that addressed his current interests at the time, such as the Dahlia Society, woodcarver’s club, and so on.  When he came to Grand Junction in the ’90s, he volunteered at the Soup Kitchen at Catholic Outreach and worked for a little while at City Market.  He lost his second wife, Gloria, to ovarian cancer in 1999.

It is impossible to enumerate all of Bob’s interests without leaving something out.  He was never afraid to try something new, and not knowing how to do something never deterred him from proceeding with a project.  Not only was he an avid fisherman, but he also liked advising his friends and acquaintances on matters of fishing.    He took many of his grandchildren on their first fishing experiences.

He restored his 1931 Ford Model A automobile and took the first place at the 1990 Model A national car show in San Diego.  He was a collector of lots of things including model cars, boats and ships, planes, trains, patches from travel destinations, seashells, rocks, and tools.  He was a wood carver and a meticulous craftsman. He held a great interest in College football and monitored the NCAA standings regularly. He enjoyed bowling and bocce ball.  In addition, he often watched golf, the Little League World Series, NASCAR and Formula 1 racing, and other sporting events on TV.  

He was preceded in death by his parents, Benjamin and Pearl Mae Lesher, and brothers, Woody and Ben, as well as his former wives, Carol and Gloria.

Survivors include his wife, Mary Dean Lesher, his daughter, Carol Ann (Tom) Abbett of Carmel, IN, his son, Robert (Linda) Lesher, Jr of Moyock, NC, one sister, Pearl Brierton of El Cajon, CA, one brother, Ronald (Sally) Lesher of Bryan, TX.  He left behind 8 grandchildren:  Benjamin Abbett of Cambridge, MA, Demarise Abbett of Indianapolis, IN, Craig Lesher (Liz) of           VA, Mackenzie Lesher of Moyock, NC, Amber Gildenhouse (Dennis) of San Diego, CA, Seth (Lauren) Lowe of Gautier, Malyn Barnett and Annika Barnett of Springfield, OR. He was loved and respected 20 nieces and nephews.  In addition, he was beloved by his sister and brother -in-law, John and JoDee Scholz of Albuquerque, NM, and Mary Dean’s children, Bobbie (RP) Peters of Boise, ID and Zack (Jamie) Barnett of Springfield OR.  He is going to be missed by a huge number of dear friends who called him “Grandpa” or “Dad.”.

Vigil and Rosary will be at 10:00 AM in the chapel at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Friday, November 30 followed by the Funeral Mass at 11:00 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church.  Interment will be in May 2019.

In lieu of flowers, his family asks that friends contribute to St. Mary’s Foundation, Hope West Hospice, or Catholic Outreach.

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