Cover photo for Robert Bruce's Obituary
1944 Robert 2016

Robert Bruce

May 24, 1944 — November 8, 2016

Robert Scott Bruce, age 72, of Pequot Lakes, passed away on Tuesday afternoon, November 8, 2016, at St. Cloud Hospital in St. Cloud, MN. Bob had a full life and fought a good fight over 35 years against several debilitating medical issues. He was born May 24, 1944, in St. Paul, to Forrest E. Bruce and Miriam W. (Hackett) Bruce. The family moved to Mankato where Bob and his two brothers were raised and schooled. Graduating from Mankato High School in 1962, he enlisted in the Navy where he served as a Naval electrician (E4). He was proud of his military service and the Naval Fighter Squadron VF-142 (Ghost Riders). He was stationed at Yankee Station in Vietnam, the USS Ranger CVA-61, the Naval Air Station at Miramar, CA and honorably discharged in September of 1966. On his way home to Minnesota on a train from San Diego, he met his future bride, Karen Elizabeth Rotegard, when she boarded in Kansas City. They were married June 16, 1968, and lived in St. Paul, Ramsey, Oak Grove, Lake Shore and Pequot Lakes during their 48-year marriage.

Bob worked as a machinist/foreman/supervisor for over 35 years, primarily at Northwest Swiss-Matic, Inc. in Golden Valley, MN. He returned to his vocational love as a fishing guide after retiring in 2000. He enjoyed playing baseball, coaching women's softball teams, bowling and judging coonhound hunts. He was an active member of the Minnesota Street Rod Association, serving as member of the Board of Directors, as Vice President and as President until 2000. Bob spent free time building, wiring and driving street rods and he was passionate about his volunteer work each year at the Back to the 50's event.

Bob enjoyed everything about the outdoors: fishing, hunting, golfing, trapping, boating, grilling, gardening and just sitting outside on the deck or patio. He was an avid follower of Minnesota football and basketball teams. His retrievers & labs all became family. He loved to travel & eat. His last trip in March was a 19-day eating excursion through 16 states that fulfilled one of his dreams: to eat seafood across the Gulf Coast. Most of all, he loved being with people. He enjoyed talking with friends, sharing stories and getting to know the many people who so enriched his life.

Bob is survived by his wife, Karen, and his brother, John. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Jim, of Mankato.

In lieu of flowers or gifts, donations to support Veterans would be appreciated, such as the Veterans Fund at Breath of Life Adult Day Service in Brainerd or Disabled American Veterans.

A memorial service with military honors will be held at 2 PM on Saturday, December 10, 2016, at Timberwood Church, Nisswa, MN. Bob believed celebrations were improved with pie, so dessert will follow at the church with pie to celebrate his life.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Robert Bruce, please visit our flower store.

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