Robert Arhart, 78

Published 10:33 am Friday, March 8, 2013

Robert “Bob” Arhart, 78, died Tuesday, March 5, 2013, after a courageous battle against cancer.

Robert Arhart

Robert Arhart

Robert Dean Arhart was born Nov. 10, 1934, to Elston and Ella Mae (Ritter) Arhart in Union Township, Floyd County, Iowa. He attended Marble Rock Consolidated School and graduated in 1952. On March 3, 1956, he married the love of his life, Delores “Toodie” Krull. This union was blessed with four children: Randy, Janine, Kim and Rick.

Bob grew up on a small farm. He began helping at the age of 7 by driving tractor. At the age of 12, he rented 80 acres from his uncle. Bob also worked for two years with the Charles City Western Railroad as a section hand. In 1957, he began his career with Northwestern Bell Telephone Company as a lineman in Waterloo. He worked his way up the company ladder as an installer and repairman, then to management with a transfer to Council Bluffs. His management career took him to Mason City in 1967 and then to Minneapolis in 1986. He retired in 1994, having never missed a day’s pay in close to 38 years. Bob and Toodie moved to Garner, Iowa, in 1998, where he enjoyed his retirement close to his family and friends.

Email newsletter signup

Bob enjoyed the great outdoors and being one with nature. Prior to GPS lake maps, he could navigate to many secret fishing spots on Mille Lacs Lake by using shoreline landmarks and a compass. For numerous years he helped with the Boy Scouts of America as a scoutmaster, where he received several awards and recognitions. He coached softball and little league baseball. He was a passionate golfer and enjoyed being on the course. Bob shared his skills and talents by volunteering for his community and those less fortunate. He was always there to help others. This trait stood out in his love and devotion to his wife, as he was her caretaker while she struggled with dementia in her final years. Bob adored his family and enjoyed being a regular spectator for all of his grandchildren’s extra-curricular activities and sports. His heart was filled with love for his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. His beaming smile and quick wit brought joy and laughter to all that met him.

The legacy of Robert’s life will continue on in the hearts of his children: son Randy (Jane) Arhart of Austin, Minn., and their children Ryan (Kelsey) Arhart, Lindsay (fiancée Ryan Ranschau) and Ashley; daughter Janine (Brian) Hammarstedt of Mason City, Iowa, and their children Michele (Dan) Werts and great-grandchild John Robert Werts, Amanda (Nick) Steege and great-grandchildren Noah, Tayden and Derrick, and Matt Hammarstedt; daughter Kim (Kevin) Smith of Belmond, Iowa, and their sons Kody and Kyle; son Rick (Tammy) Arhart of Rochester, Minn., and their daughters Abigail and Alexandria; sisters Judy (Jim) Miller of Cedar Falls, Iowa, and LaVonne Edmundson of Deerwood, Minn.; along with many other beloved relatives.

Robert is preceded in death by his wife Delores; parents Elston and Ella Mae, step father Vern Merrill; and brother Delaine Merrill.

Funeral services are scheduled for noon Saturday, March 9, 2013, and will be at the Wesley United Methodist Church in Mason City at 1405 S Pennsylvania Ave. Mason City, Iowa, 50401. Burial will be after the service at the West Side Cemetery in Marble Rock. The Revs. Keith Scott and Mike Olmsted will be officiating the service. A visitation will take place from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 8, at the Wesley United Methodist Church in Mason City. Visitation will also be one hour prior to service on Saturday. Those wishing to express their sympathy through a memorial can be made to Wesley United Methodist Church in Robert’s name or may direct them in care of the family by sending to Randy Arhart, 2800 Second Ave. NW, Austin, MN 55912. Andrews Funeral Homes Belmond, Iowa, is in charge of arrangements.