Welcome to the memorial page for

Robert W. Pemberton

March 10, 1925 ~ February 14, 2017 (age 91)

Robert (Bob) Wynn Pemberton aged 91 of Grand Rapids passed away peacefully on February 14th, 2017.  He was preceded in death by his wife Barbara (6/11/2016) of nearly 70 years, and his Daughter Katherine Porter.  Bob is survived by his Son Michael (Barbara) of Grand Rapids, Grand Children, Robin (Ron) Rowland of Richmond, VA, Ryan (Pamila) Ross of Modesto, CA, Rebecca (Steve) Cater of Woodlawn, VA, Michael (Katie) Pemberton of Rockford, MI, Raina (Bryan) Brimmage of Little Rock, AK and Paige (Rich) Tober of Spring Lake, MI.  14 Great Grandchildren and 3 Great Great Grandchildren.   

Bob was an Army Air Corps Veteran first being trained in single engine fighters, then moved to B-17 bombers.  He left the service as a 2nd Lieutenant and Co-Pilot/Crew Commander of the plane he came to love.  “It just wanted to Fly” was his comment about the “Flying Fortress”.   His stories were fascinating.

Much later his flying experience would be rewarded by an invitation to join the “Quiet Birdmen” (QB’s), an elite fraternal group of flyers from all forms of aviation.  Once accepted, it’s a lifetime membership.  He cherished his membership and was honored to be a part of the group.    

Bob found his career passion selling Commercial Real Estate.  He loved it and he was good at it.  He said it never felt like a job and spent 40 years filling the needs of his loyal clients.  He was a respected leader in the Industry and was recognized with numerous sales achievement awards.  Not much for the limelight, he was content to just move on the next deal.  The business provided time to pursue other passions in his life as well.  He retired from the business at age 82.

Bob was happiest outdoors.  His “Church” was in everything he found in nature.  Any excuse to be outside would suffice.  Hunting, Fishing, and Mushrooming were some of his favorites.  He took up Metal Detecting for a time and then moved into outdoor photography.  Photography became a cottage business where his prints found their way into a variety of gift stores and restaurants in the area. 

Bob and Barb traveled the country by car and then motor home.  Retracing family histories was fun for them and it took them all over the country.  The American Southwest was one of their favorite repeat destinations.  They visited several of his war time training locations bringing back memories of times that changed his life.  He was forever curious about what was waiting for them over the next hill.

Bob was a quiet man with a knack of delivering perfectly timed witty one liners that enhanced any conversation.  He drew on his life experiences and shared them freely.  He was a realist and was in control of his own destiny until he had to finally let go.  Bob and his wife Barb will be greatly missed.   

Memorial contributions can be made to Hospice of Michigan, 989 Spalding Ave. Ada, MI 49301 or The National Parks Foundation.

Cremation has taken place. A private family memorial service will take place this summer. 


Charitable donations may be made to:

Hospice of Michigan
989 Spaulding Ave. S.E., Ada MI 49301
Tel: 1-616-454-1426

National Park Foundation
1110 Vermont Ave, NW, Suite 200, Washington DC 20005
Tel: 1-202-796-2500

 Service Information

Private Services

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