Robert “Bob” R. Read

Robert “Bob” R. Read passed away on August 10, 2022.

READ—Robert “Bob” R. Read passed away on August 10, 2022. He was 95 years old.

He was born in Seattle, Wash., to Guy R. and Edith Read and had an older brother, William T. Read. The family moved to Portland, Ore., in 1929 and he attended Alameda Grammar School and Grant High School there. He attended Oregon State College (OSU now), graduating with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics.

He married Joyce Johnston of Florence, Ore., and they lived and worked in Portland for the next four years. Bob was employed as a statistician at Pacific Telephone. Their first child, Kathleen L. Read, was born there in 1951. They moved to Florence in 1952 and Bob worked at Johnston Motors in accounting and insurance. Shortly after getting settled, he established his own business, Read Insurance Agency. Their second child, Scott D. Read, was born in 1957. Bob and Joyce divorced in 1967.

He continued to run his agency and he married Virginia L. (Gini) Carroll of Florence, Ore., in 1970. They ran the agency together until it was sold to Coast Insurance Services in 1993. He had many fond memories of great staff and clients of the business.

Bob was an avid gardener and loved planting rhododendrons, hanging fuchsia and begonia baskets and had flowers galore in his gardens. He started seeds in the greenhouse to get a jump on the gardening season. He loved travelling, camping, hiking, backpacking, enjoying lake time and especially family time. He loved people and could always find someone to talk to, whether he knew them or not! He loved his community and was involved with many projects to improve it.

Some community projects include:

  • Longtime member and past president of the Siuslaw Booster Club, including planning and assisting with the Rhody Festival and activities.
  • Helped build the original Chamber of Commerce Information Center on Ninth Street and supervised operation. It was later rebuilt at the present location. Also, past president of Chamber of Commerce.
  • On board that built the original Western Lane Hospital on 12th Street in the 1950s.
  • On Lane County Planning Commission, representing Western Lane County in mid 1960s.
  • Council member in 1973-74 and Mayor of Dunes City in 1975-76. Also served on the road committee to map city streets.
  • On steering committee that supported transition to Peace Harbor Hospital — active in obtaining funds to meet the requirements of the transition. 1993-1995
  • On Western Lane Ambulance District Authority 1986-95 and passed thru bonds for Peace Harbor and Sacred Heart Re-Finance
  • Sponsored 2 children through Children International Organization 1984-1995
  • Aided in collecting funds supporting and remodeling the Siuslaw Public Library
  • Active in committee supporting the building of the Florence Events Center. Co-chair of campaign to obtain funds for the project. On operations steering committee, supporting center manager, for several years.
  • Florence First Citizen 1995
  • Advisory Board for Rural Fire District 1992/1995
  • Long time Florence Rotary Club member — headed committee for drive for AIDS tests in Kenya in coordination with Dr. Al Brauer.
  • On Board of Western Lane Community Foundation 1996-2001
  • Longtime member of BPOE Elks Club (2nd initiation class)
  • Member of Presbyterian Church of the Siuslaw

Bob is survived by his wife, Gini, his children Kathleen Read and Scott Read (Karen), granddaughters Colleen Fiser (Jeff), Laurie Jane and Antonia Read as well as mother-in-law, Virginia Mason, sister-in-law Debra Lamb (Larry) and brother-in-law Robert Carroll (Teri) and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother and sister-in-law William and Jean Read and his brother-in-law Daniel Carroll.

Bob was a loving husband, son, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend to many people and will be greatly missed by all.

No public services will be held; a family celebration will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, a donation to the charity of your choice would be greatly appreciated.