Remembering Arthur Robert (Bob) Guy
The story of Arthur ‘Robert’ Guy can’t be told in a few short paragraphs on a page, but we’ll try to capture a few parts of his life that made a lasting impression on his family and friends. While he was born on April 27, 1925 his history began well before then and continues to extend after his passing on August 24, 2017. His parents, George ‘Arthur’ Guy and Laurette Sievers Guy decided that six children would be the ideal family size. So Jean, Robert (Bob), David, Richard (Dick), Sarah and John spent their childhood years on the Guy farm in Austin, MN. That’s where they learned that hard work never hurt anyone – although Bob said they had their share of aches and pains from working long hours in the fields and tending to a wide variety of animals. His strong sense of family continued when he married his high school sweetheart Rose (Brown) in 1943. Shortly after they married, he joined the Army and served in World War II until honorably discharged. They returned to MN and continued to grow their family and the family farm. Bob and Rose had 4 children: Robert (Bob), Mary, Stephen and Susan. He was so proud of them and all that they accomplished in their lives. He was especially thrilled when he became a grandfather. Over the years he would be granddad to six girls and one grandson. Mary (Litfin) and Butch’s children include Kim (Luepke), Jodi (Dooling-Litfin) and Jill (Elkin). Bob and Mary Ellen added two more girls: Melissa (Gragg) and Jennifer (Guy-Franzone). Then Susan added to the family with Cassie (Matthais) and Laird ‘Arthur‘ (Mueller). He loved them all as only a grandfather knows how to love his grandkids. And he received so much love from them in return. He was blessed to also have 10 great- and three great-great-grandchildren. After working tirelessly on the farm for nearly 20 years, Bob spent the remainder of his working years with John Deere. He owned the dealership in Arlington, MN for eight years. This gave him the opportunity to stay connected to the farming community he loved. He knew every farmer in Freeborn and Mower counties and most of those in the neighboring counties too. He was remarkable at remembering everyone’s name – a trait he continued late into his years. He’d often say ‘nothing runs like a Deere’ when he passed farm equipment on the rural roads of MN. He told so many stories of the work they did before those massive pieces of machinery came along to modernize farming. He always said he was born too soon. While in Arlington, he had a tremendous impact on the community. He was a member of the board of Arlington Industries and worked tirelessly to help bring business and industry to the community. He was also a volunteer fire fighter, a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and the Lions Club. With all that was on his plate, he and Rose still found time to enjoy one of their favorite pastimes – dancing. After they returned to Austin, they could be found at the Elks Club and other venues with family and friends on many week-ends. Rose said that when she first met Bob, he didn’t know how to roller skate or dance – two very popular past times in the 40’s. But he promised her that, if she gave up roller skating, he would learn to dance. He kept that promise and they became incredible dance partners. They joined a square dancing club and spent their weekends dressed to the nines and stepping to the cues of the caller. It was amazing to see them glide across the dance floor whether it was a waltz, a foxtrot or the quickstep – they were so in sync with each other. It was quite magical to watch. When he wasn’t spending time with his family, he gave back to the Austin community too. He served as Secretary/Treasurer on the Oakland Farmer’s Coop Elevator Board, volunteered as an Oakland 4-H Club Leader, and was the Secretary and Exalted Ruler of the Austin Elks Club. He also served as a Deacon in the Westminster Presbyterian Church in Austin.Throughout the years, there were so many memorable moments and events in Bob’s life. Avid golfers, he and Rose spent a great deal of time on the golf course with friends and family. Even though we was not able to golf in his later years, on his 90th birthday his sons took him out to a course so he could sink a few putts for old time sake. He and Rose were given the gift of an Alaskan trip from their children for their 50th wedding anniversary. That was one of the places they always wanted to see and he talked about that amazing adventure for years. In 2000, Bob and Rose sold their home in Austin and moved to Arizona. This put them closer to both of their sons, Bob (Mary Ellen) and Stephen (Elaine). And it meant no more snow shoveling! They embraced their new community and church and made so many new friends. Bob and Rose were a team that constantly gave back to their new community. They delivered meals to those in need, mentored young children at their church, and took care of neighbors who needed help with day-to-day tasks. As the years passed, it was the visits from his grandchildren and great grandchildren that he treasured. Kim and Jodi lived out-of-state, so their visits were not as frequent as he would have like. But they never missed a chance to spend time with their grandparents when they visited Arizona. Melissa and her girls, Ella and Julia, would take them out to lunch and fill them in on their school and sports activities. He was so amazed and pleased with their accomplishments. For Bob’s 80th birthday, he wanted to go to Washington D.C. to see the WWII memorial. So he and Stephen boarded a plane and shared an incredible weekend together seeing the sites. Bob had been stationed in D.C. during the war and had not been back since he left the Army. He was amazed at the beauty of the exhibits and the young guide’s knowledge of the events of that war. He shared stories of his time in the Army but was so grateful to hear the stories of others who saw a different side of the war than he did. At their 70th wedding anniversary, Bob and Rose renewed their vows with their favorite minister, George Saylor, officiating. Stephen and Elaine were thrilled when Pops (as he was so aptly nicknamed) asked them to stand up for them at the ceremony. While the service was quite moving, Pops couldn’t resist the chance to show a little humor. When George introduced them to the congregation as Mr. and Mrs. Guy, Bob remarked “I sure hope this lasts”. It certainly did last – this year they would have celebrated 74 years together. He often commented that he was born too soon. He marveled at new technology (so he learned to use an IPad at the age of 80) and self-driving cars (although he said he’d never trust one). He took time to keep up with world events and his adopted football team, the Arizona Cardinals. He was never too busy to help teach people how things worked or how to fix something that wasn’t working. Decades earlier, when his father died, he told his children that the mold was broken – there would never be another person who would embody the integrity and kind, caring spirit of his father. But they now know that was not true. The mold wasn’t broken after all – it seems that the good Lord decided to replicate it. That old adage “Like father, like son”, was never more true as Bob was his father’s son in so many ways –in the lives that he touched, his kindness towards others, and in the love that he graciously shared. What an incredible legacy to leave his family. And it makes his life even more meaningful than he could have ever imagined. While his family had to say goodbye to him, there were those that went before him and welcomed him with open arms – his parents and siblings (John, David, and Jean) and other family members and friends. Someone once said that our loved ones never really leave us because they live on in our hearts and in our memories. While Bob is with his heavenly family now, we were so blessed to have him in our lives – and in our hearts. To honor his memory, enjoy an enormous dish of your favorite ice cream (or a Heath Blizzard!), savor a good brandy, or simply dance to your favorite music. He never hesitated to tell those that he treasured that he loved them – so we hope you will do the same. That is how he lived his life. And that is how he will be remembered. You are encouraged to post your comments, stories, messages or photos at this website. They will be shared with the Guy family and friends. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospice of the Valley, Phoenix, AZ.