Dad, Papa, Uncle, Coach, Bob
(but definitely not late for dinner)
With love from
your family and friends
Well, you can call me Bob and you can call me Bobby.
And you can call me Robert and you can call me Luigi.
And you can call me Uncle and you can call me Coach.
And you can call me Dad and you can call me Papa.
But you doesn’t hasta call me Dr. Mitchell!
Whatever name you choose today – happy birthday to you, Dad, Brother,
Uncle, Husband, Coach, Teacher, Friend, Robert, Bob, Bobootski.
Bob is the best big brother a guy could wish for. He's not only been a true friend
and inspiration - he's also a lot of fun!
When I was a kid, my favorite time of the day was when Bob would take a break
from studying and play football with me and my friends. When his teenage
friends were around, he let me hang out with them. Like the time we made
home-made bottle rockets and one chased Bob around a tree until he had to dive
in a ditch. Or the time he asked his artist friend to draw me an original cartoon to
In addition to being a top student, Bob was a champion wrestler. I loved going to
his matches! I saw how hard he worked and that had a big impact on me.
Later on, Bob put the same dedication into his books. I remember that he had a
statue on his desk of a cobbler carefully making a shoe. Bob showed me how he
went about writing - painstakingly crafting each page so that his books would be
the best in the world. His work ethic and attention to detail was an inspiration for
While I was still in the computer business, Bob started the kids' chess clubs. That
was very influential for me, something I drew on as I began doing my own
Bob and I have gone on annual trips together for decades. He's really fun to do
things with. Whether it's skiing, playing poker, going to Vegas shows, hiking in the
desert, or eating in gourmet restaurants - we always have a good time and lots of
Happy Birthday Big Brother!
I have so many happy memories of our relationship, the conversation and laughter when driving to the poker
tournament, me in the front seat, anticipating 'the bluff' and whether I would be able to pull it off with such seasoned
and experienced poker players. Our conversations about anything and everything, politics, technology and any and all
current events, I am your captured audience!
I see how you and Wanda embrace your children and grandchildren. And Bob, I can't help but notice the time you
spend on your phone contacting your wide network of friends and family, keeping tabs and making sure that
'everything is alright.'
But the most significant memory I have of you and Wanda, the one that speaks so much of your character, love and
compassion, is your outpouring of concern toward my sister when she contacted pneumonia after our wedding. I
remember saying to you and Wanda how thankful I am to have you here in Minneapolis, extending your stay, to look
over Anne so that David and I could go on our honeymoon. ''Are you sure that you want to take this on?'' You and
Wanda looked at me and simply stated, “We are all family now, think nothing of it, we will be here for your sister, don't
worry.” Such kind and thoughtful words.
I am truly blessed to be part of the Mitchell family. Thank you for being a part of my life.
P.S. (From David)
Bob and Wanda have always been very devoted and loving parents,
and are now very devoted and loving grandparents! I've always been
struck by how warm and inviting Bob and Wanda's house is.
Whenever we've been there, there's so much activity and life.
Usually there's a party with friends and family, games with Bob,
excellent meals cooked by Wanda, and lots of laughter and
Some of my best (and funniest) memories of Uncle Bob have been talking about how he thinks we’re the only two people in the
family who have the Asian love gene. Whenever we would talk on the phone, he would tell me about how ever since he’s been
little, he’s been enamored by Asian women, and that he thinks he’s an “Asian trapped in a honkey’s body.” He told me that I’d be
set for life if I just stayed with my Asian girlfriends, because they’re the best cooks. It was mostly him telling me all this and me
just saying “yea….yea” haha. I also remember playing poker with him and dad, and it seemed like every time, I would always
figure out a way to bluff him or get lucky, so I’d always win. And after every hand he’d just go, “Alec, you dog!”
Happy Birthday, Uncle Bob!
d d d d d
After my dad bought his first BMW, your family came to visit us in Minnesota. My dad loved his new car and was extra careful with
it (he would only park it next to "worthy" cars in the parking lot). Uncle Bob, dad, me, you, and Stacey all went to the Mall of
America one afternoon in my dad's car. I could tell my dad was showing it off to Uncle Bob, who asked to try driving it on the way
home. It being Minnesota in the summer, there was a lot of road construction, and we came on a stretch of road that was marked
all over with orange cones. Uncle Bob said something to the effect of "lets see how good this car really is" and proceeded to drive,
to my dad's horror, through the cones like an obstacle course. I remember my dad yelling and frantically grabbing the dash board
and Uncle Bob laughing his head off as he almost destroyed his little brother's new BMW. I think its a perfect example not only of
Uncle Bob and dad's very brotherly, competitive bond, but also about how Uncle Bob can encourage people not to take
themselves too seriously and have a little fun with life.
d d d d d
Growing up, I looked forward to family trips out to Oregon for many reasons, but especially because I knew Uncle Bobby would
always have some special adventures planned for us. One particular adventure sticks out in my memory - he bought us all
Western-style hats (mine was teal colored) and we went horse-back riding on the beach! It was a day I've never forgotten. Happy
Birthday, Uncle Bobby!
When Great Grandma Mitchell moved from Minnesota to Oregon, Uncle Bobby met Nick, Nicole, and I at the Portland
Airport to greet grandma. This was the first time grandma got to meet Nicole. Her first Great Great Granddaughter.
When Dillon was a baby and Nicole was 5, Nick and I had our very first kid free evening. It was December, and we were
having an overnight company celebration for Nick's employer. We drove the kids to Corvallis to stay with Uncle Bobby and
Aunt Wanda. I have great memories of sleepovers at that house as a kid, and am so glad my kids had a chance to visit at
This story is embarrassing, but I will never forget the one sleepover I had as a kid in Corvallis when I wet the bed. Except the
bed was the white leather couch. Eek.
I always remember Uncle Bobby as the Uncle who was an author. I loved looking through his book that had a picture of
Shauna in it.
I will never forget how much he helped make sure Great Grandma Mitchell was so comfortable during her last years.
Especially, the day I said goodbye to her while she was in the hospital.
You are very loved Uncle Bobby!! Happy 70th!
d d d d d
I remember all the funny
stories and pool we played.
Happy birthday uncle Bobby!
We love you. Hope you guys
are doing good and would
love to see you all.
Love, Katie (Keffer) Waley
Your dad has always remained Bobby to me. There are some things I remember so well. We were very close
when we were younger and did a lot together. These are just a few.
1. One day mom sent him to the store down the street for 1 dozen eggs. He came back with 1 egg that was
not broken. As I remember he didn’t know what happened.
2. One year for Christmas he bought mom a blue head (one they displayed hats on). I asked him why and he
said because she needed a new head.
3. Another year he bought her a stuffed pink snake.
4. We always walked to school, but once in awhile we would catch a bus that let us off down the street. When
we were walking up to our house a couple of boys said to your dad hey come over by the ditch that had ice
on it and walk on the ice. I told him not to do it, but he did anyway and it broke and there he was all wet.
Luckily, the ditch didn’t have much ice in it. I ran home and told mom and she went and picked him up.
5. When we were in the 1st and 2nd grade, Bobby saw a garter snake and said let’s follow him. Don’t worry, it
won’t hurt you. Well, our street was a dead end and went and crawled over a fence into a pasture and
chased this snake down this little creek that went through. When the snake got to the end, he stopped,
turned, raised his head at us. I ran home as fast as I could. Bobby even seemed shocked.
6. I remember him and I both loved to dance so when they’d have a dance in town, we always went and he
would always dance one dance with me.
7. When he was in high school, he got a Yamaha motorcycle and we spent that summer riding that
8. When he started his first year of college, he wanted to take the Yamaha. When I went over to see him off,
Daddy and him had the Yamaha in the trunk of the car. They had dismantled it to put it in the trunk to take
it to Eugene. Mom told me it never got put back together.
9. Bobby wrestled in high school and college and when he was in college he became the West Coast
10. We used to go to Paulina Lake in the summer with our grandma and grandfather Mitchell.
Grandpa used to bring a big bag of walnuts and every evening we would sit on the porch and feed the
chipmunks. Bobby decided one year he’d wanted to catch one. He got a box and stick. He tied a piece of string
around the stick and used it to prop up the box. He put walnuts down and when the chipmunk came, he
captured it. We took him hoe, but the next day he was gone. He had chewed a hole in the box never to be found
I could go none stop. We did so many things together. We were always busy. Never watched TV. Outside all the
time come rain or shine.
I love you brother very much and it’s been wonderful to have you as my brother. So much fun!
Happy 70th Birthday Bobby. Hope you remember the things we did. These are just a few.
This photo truly speaks volumes of your dad- keeping us afloat in his calm manner. I
was impressed with his way of handling children, especially Stacey.
I remembered being at your house and talking with Bob when Stacey walked in
suddenly and announced to Bob that she was running away. I was amazed that Bob
took it in his stride and told Stacey that since it is near lunch time she should have a
sandwich first in case she gets hungry and that she not forget to pack everything she
needs. That truly was impressive!!! Stacey left on her bicycle and came back a few
minutes later. Bob just asked if Stacey had forgotten something in a very cool and
serious manner. Stacey just looked at him and said she changed her mind. I found
the whole episode so remarkably refreshing in the way Bob handled his kids. He is
truly an amazing father with such great insight.
Warm regards, Guan Bee and Family
d d d d d
Dear Uncle Bob,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY! It seems like only yesterday that I was that awkward teenager who
invaded your home for a year and a half. I tried to search for pictures from when I stayed
with you and Aunty Wanda, but that was a time before the advent of smart phones and
the digitalization of our lives, so photographic documentation of that time was not to be
found. I did manage to dig up these pictures from prom and a picture of you, Aunty
Wanda, and Keillor at the coast when I visited before starting law school. How time flies!
You were the most patient of chess coaches, when I was a child forgetting which color I
was playing halfway through the game and the most thoughtful of father-figures,
dispensing wisdom on all topics ranging from career advice to how to choose a man
(you were right - knowing how a person interacts with animals is quite telling of
personality). I am forever grateful that you and your family invited me to join the family.
It has been a joy and a privilege to be part of your life and I hope that we will continue
to be in each other's thoughts for years to come. I wish you all the best and I hope you
have the happiest of birthdays.
d d d d d
Steve and I had been your parents' home for Thanksgiving few years ago. It was a very special trip to us because I
deeply felt Bob and Wanda have big heart. The two pictures was taken in our living room when your parents visited
Vancouver. Let us say Happy Birthday to Bob in advance.
Steve and Pointe Chung
We wish you a happy birthday Uncle
Bob! It's wonderful to have an Uncle
like you. From chess to poker and
everything in between, we love talking
with you, and eating with you, and
meeting with you, and competing with
you. We love you so very much!
Ann, Boo, Lala, and Fernando
I have known your Dad since I was in high school when he and Wanda went to Taiwan for their
Honeymoon. I was trying to find the pictures when we went to Ali Shan to see the Sun rise but I
can’t find them in Boise. I am pretty sure, I left them in my Mom’s house in Taipei.
Whonchee and I have been asking him to visit us ever since we moved to Boise in July 1993, Wanda
has visited us twice but not Bob. Finally, last November, the week before Thanksgiving holidays,
Wanda called and said whether it was convenient to visit us. I said of course, and on the phone I
said we can visit St Chapelle winery and Wanda said Bob doesn’t drink anymore…
Anyway, they arrived on Friday 11/15/13 about 5:00PM and we had a great time in our favorite
Japanese restaurant, Fujiyama. It took Bob 20 years to visit us in Boise. Next day, I asked Bob why
he doesn’t drink anymore he used to love St Chapelle’s red wine; one time when Wanda came to
Boise she brought him 6 bottles of St Chapelle red wine that’s how I remembered that’s why I
suggest we went there to refresh the memory… Attached is the picture of Wanda and Bob in front
of St. Chapelle Winery… After that we went to several other winery tasting wine. We had a great
time. At night he asked me whether I dyed my hair. I said yes, I only did the middle part of the gray
hair to keep me looking younger. He asked me whether he should dye his hair. I said why not as it
will make him look younger and he did it when he got home and emailed me attached picture to
show me. I complimented him.
Bob is such a loving and humorous person; I enjoyed talking to him and always have fun with him.
By the way, he promised he will paint a vineyard for us since Whonchee said when he retires he
want to be a wine maker. Last time I talked to Bob on the phone he said it is still under
Happy Birthday, Bob!
Sabrina and Family
Bob, Ron, and I went to the movies together whenever we had the chance, and were always joking around exchanging wisecracks. I
guess you could use the following anecdote for your memory book, if you think it isn’t too outrageous:
Quick-witted Bob was always a jokester (and still is). I recall one occasion while walking down Main Street in Klamath Falls along with
“Mitchell” and a mutual friend, Ron Coleman. Bob was a freshman in high school at the time.
We stepped inside this five-and-dime to browse over the merchandise. While I paused to examine a nifty looking pen and pencil set,
Mitchell sauntered over with a shifty grin on his face. In an audible stage whisper, he spouted, “Put it in your pocket—they’ll never
Bob got the response he was looking for. Mortified, I couldn’t chuck the set back on the shelf fast enough! Now, of course young Bob
would never dream of shoplifting in those days. Only the “rods” with the greased-back hair and leather jackets did stuff like that. Bob
Mitchell was Ivy League all the way—from his pinstriped button-down shirt to the “Princeton” flattop haircut. But he sure never
passed up an opportunity to scrape up an easy chuckle at the expense of a gullible friend!
d d d d d
Bob’s credentials as an athlete are a matter of record. He was the Pacific Coast Conference wrestling champion in the 157-pound class
in 1964 and he competed in the NCAA nationals that year in New York City.
I’m no Leonard Kauffman, but I like to think I helped hone those grappling skills as early as grade school and junior high. Routinely,
when Bob and I got together for anything from tossing a football around to playing chess, it would turn to wrestling -- much to his
mother’s dismay. In a valiant effort to save her lamps and furniture she would admonish us, without a lot of success, to stop the
wrestling. Sooner or later she would turn in exasperation to Bob’s dad for backup. His standard solution: “Just send Floyd home.”
I wonder if Bob remembers our shared debut on the stage. In a third grade Christmas play at Shasta Elementary School, we were
jointly cast as a horse. Bob obviously was considered the brains of the operation, so he was the horse’s head. I was assigned the role
best suited to me.
By the way, please tell Bob that my collarbone has healed nicely since that little mishap when he tackled me onto Mrs. Priest’s lawn as
we got out of his mom’s car.
Best wishes for a happy 70th! May all his flops be fantastic, his turns terrific and his rivers flowing with prosperity.
Doug Floyd (70 years and 3 months)
The teacher was Miss
Stahl. You’ll recognize Bob
in the back, far right. That’s
me (Doug), just to his right
in the row in front of him.
One of my special memories about Bob was when we were teens in high school and we ran a little scam to make spending money.
Here's what we did:
Every day the local newspaper carried grocery coupons and somehow Bob learned that he could get some of the local grocery clerks to
give him the cash for the coupons instead of applying them to a purchase of the advertised product. So we would buy the local paper
and see how many coupons it carried. I believe the paper cost 10 cents, so if there were more than 10 cents in coupons, we could make
a profit. When we saw the newspaper carried a profitable number of coupons, we'd both go out and buy as many copies of the paper
as we could find. Then we'd sit down and clip all the coupons out and take them to the grocery store to cash them. I was somewhat
hesitant about this but Bob insisted it would work. And it did, for a while. Eventually one of the clerks thought better of it and told us
no more. But it was a profitable scam while it lasted. Then Bob started to show me how we could cash in our points on pinball
machines at the bowling alley.
Also - Ask Bob about how he and I once launched a tadpole into the air in the nosecone of a homemade rocket made out of a soda straw
and gunpowder. It was Bob's invention.
d d d d d
I grew up with your dad while living in Klamath Falls, Oregon and enjoyed many childhood memories with him.
• One of my favorite memories was the special dinner item of cheese rarebit.
• Bob was the only wrestler that I knew that learned and perfected wrestling moves from a book.
• Tennis games at Wiard Park.
• Bob’s chess prowess.
Please wish Bob a happy 70th birthday from me.
Sincerely, Merle Sine
d d d d d
One thing always bugged me about you, Bob...you were the only person in our class at Shasta Elementary School that consistently read
more books in a year than I did!
Hope you are still reading. Happy Birthday from your "older classmate"...turned 70 in February!
Faith Peery Hoffman
Bob and I met at Altamont Jr. High. We played sports together there and then moved on to Klamath Union High School. We
played sports together there as well. I moved to Corvallis, Oregon for the last two years of high school. Bob and I didn’t
connect again until we were both at the University of Oregon. What made this so significant to me was he took time away
from his busy studies of working on his PhD in Physics, to being my work-out partner. It made no difference what the weather
was. We ran in the rain, cold - whatever. He was always there for encouragement.
I was training for the Marine Officer Commissioning Program, so it was great to have a partner like Bob. We ran together in
Hendricks Park, lifted weights in the weight room, wrestled in the mat room, and had an outstanding conditioning program.
There were a few times when it was raining so hard that we did run the Mc court area outside the basketball court. Those
were few. We were usually in the rain! :-)
Bob was just a great friend. Not many would have done that. I always appreciated his friendship and encouragement. After
leaving for the Marine Corps, I didn’t see Bob until years later. I heard that he had become the head of the math department
at Lane Community College. I didn’t think much about this until I was working on a study of ballistics for the Los Angeles
Police Department. An issue came up about physics and we were stumped. I told the team I was working with that I had a
friend in Oregon that could help us. Well, I called Lane College and literally got transferred five or six times until I got to the
math department. I spoke with a young lady and the conversation went something like this: “I’m an old friend of Bob Mitchell
and would like to talk to him if possible.” She said: “We don’t have a Bob Mitchell here.” I said, “Well, he’s the head of the
math department.” Then she very enthusiastically said, “Oh my, you mean DOCTOR Mitchell!” I said, “Yes.” She put me on
hold. I waited a few seconds and the line opens and Bob says, “Hi. This is Bob. Can I help you?” He didn’t know it was me on
the other end until I told him. I asked him the physics questions and we laughed and re-lived old times.
The point of the above is Bob never got caught up in the title, “Doctor.” Not many folks are like him. His genuine humility has
always been there. I have only seen that kind of humility one other time since that example almost forty years ago. We don’t
see each other much any more, but we try when I come to Oregon to see my family. Bob is and always has been a great
Happy Birthday - Bob - and God’s very richest blessings to you on the big - Seven - O!
Happy birthday to Bob and best wishes
to your whole family.
Kindest regards, John Cougill
d d d d d
Happy Birthday, Bob! Do you remember the time we won the dance contest at KU? Of course you do. We had lots of
fun dancing at Altamont Jr. High at lunch time. We were lucky the teacher let us dance. The students aren’t as lucky
now day. How is your sister? Hey, we have 3 great-grandchildren (Titan, 6, Makenna, 5, and Baby Ryden, 11 months).
Hope to see you at the 55th Class Reunion!!! God Bless You and Your Family!
Love, Sharon Nork Tofell and Eddie Tofell
d d d d d
Happy Birthday Friend! Did you know that Luther nailed the 14 Theses to the door of the Wittenburg Church in 1514…
or was it 1415… or 15 Theses in… oh well. Jack Sandmeyer
d d d d d
Hey Bob!!! Hope life is going well for you too!!! HAPPY, HAPPY, BIRTHDAY dear friend!!! Aida Messersmith
I am sending a copy of a picture from your Dad and my 7th grade yearbook from Altamont Jr. High School in Klamath
Falls. The school year was 1956-57. I am also sending a copy of the front cover of the yearbook! Am certain that you
will recognize him--he is the fifth young man from the left on the second riser from the bottom.
I met your Dad during our 6th grade year at Shasta Elementary in 1955. Bob was always a very studious young man
and always polite. Even at that early age, all the girls thought he was cute. Please wish Bob the very best on his 70th
Sharon (Hickman) Haddock
Memories from McKervey:
(This is a tough request for someone like me…)
• Chem class O jacket wrestlers - Matt and Bob
• 2732 roommate search - Bob and Charlie
• Bunk Bed Heist w Bruce Glenn
• Baseball Poker and Acey - Deucy
• Busted Mustard Kitchen Battle
• Chem supplies scrounging by Papa M. and David (11yrs.)
• Yellow Flower Carmen Ghia ...sorry 'bout that
• Parking meter B-Day present from Bruce & John
• Cougill, Kerwin, Sumich and Crabby Betty
• Blue River Jugs.....and Highway Terror
• Ken & "Mum"
• Lucky's Loser
• Cinnamon Bear Murder and Richie's Big Buck Day
• Charlie's Blue Mercedes and Settlemeir's Big boat
• Luigi, Jack and then John
• The Priest and the Physicist ...
• Wanda and Cheery Little Shauna
• Mary's Peak by Shauna in the lead
• M&M's coaxing Stacey up Newberry Crater.....Cougill bringing up
• Sunriver deception
• Waitzkin blowoff
• Stacey Chess Champ at 7?
• Liberalization of Bobo by Ira Blue
• Corvallis: Big Fish in Small Pond
• Computerized trading and intro Phil and Ron
• Survival of last NYC walk-about...
Bobby. OH! Bobby! When I met Bob I was 20 years old and had not met anyone like him. I could NEVER tell when he was serious, and,
being a very gullible person, I was constantly trying to figure out what was fact and what was fiction.
That Thanksgiving we were in for an adventure…
David and I lived in Portland and were traveling in our old Volkswagen bus to Klamath Falls to have Thanksgiving dinner with Grandma
Mitchell. We were picking up Bobby and his girlfriend, Wanda, in Eugene to ride along. It was our first introduction to Wanda and Bobby
started out telling me she was a homeless woman who he had decided to bring along so she could have a good meal. I didn’t know what
The VW had no back seats, so we put regular wooden table chairs in the back part of the van for them to sit on and headed out. Within
the first mile, a strong acceleration from a stop sign sent Bobby and Wanda tipping over backwards. I could hear Bobby telling Wanda
that this was normal. The whole trip was like that, with a window popping out of the van, and then a fiasco with trying to get chains on
the van tires for crossing the snowy pass. While having the van put up on a “lift” in a garage to try to get the chains on, Bobby had
Wanda stay in the van. We could hear her yelling as the van started going up into the air…
We arrived late to Grandma Mitchell’s. She had left the turkey in the oven while waiting for us and burned it. David and I were in our
short vegetarian phase and had told her ahead of time we wouldn’t be eating turkey. Bobbie, to my horror, kept telling Marjorie that we
weren’t eating the turkey because she had burned it. Wanda wasn’t eating it either and Bobby told his mother some convoluted story
about why she wasn’t eating the dinner. Marjorie seemed upset and I was upset because he was telling her untrue things that (I
believed) just made her feel bad.
Finally, I talked to Bobby and asked him to please, please, please be nice to his mother. So he was. He was REAL nice. He didn’t tease or
taunt or tell her things to upset her. About 20 minutes later Grandma Mitchell and I were in the kitchen and she confided in me that she
thought Bobby must be mad at her. “Why would you think that?” I wanted to know.
Her reply was a wake up call for me. She explained that his teasing and playful taunting was his usual way of interacting with her.
Because he was being so nice, he must be unhappy with her. She was in tears.
I went back to Bobby and asked him to forget my request, and to just be himself, and everything went back to “normal”. Ha!
Over the years I learned to love Bobby’s crazy teasing. But even more important, I have learned that he is a good friend, an honest man,
a thoughtful and compassionate soul I trust implicitly. He will always be my brother-in-law. My brother.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BOB!!! Sue Wicklund
Tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands, of adult students owe you a debt of gratitude – and I do too.
When we first “met,” back in the early 80s, I had just been hired to be an editor of adult education materials. Wendy, in her infinite
wisdom, had decided that an editor couldn’t just learn to be an educator – and that it was more likely that an educator could learn to
be an editor. But what did I know about developing materials? I knew what I had liked and didn’t like about different materials that I
had used teaching on Chicago’s West Side. But I had only a small clue about what it took to make a book work.
You had been signed up to work on books in the Number Power series --- and I was to be your editor. Actually, in many ways, you
were my teacher – about how to make ideas simple, clear, and digestible for our extraordinary, but hitherto academically
unsuccessful, adult learners. And so – a great partnership was born – one that spanned more than a decade and involved thousands
of hours of writing, talking, editing, rewriting, polishing, polishing again, tightening up, reviewing --- until finally, I could convince you
to let go so I could send the book to the printer. At some point, our teachers and learners had to be able to use these books. And
they did! And they loved them!
We went on to do lots of materials together. To this day, I tell people about the most dedicated, best writer I have ever worked with
(and I have worked with many in over 30 years) – Bob Mitchell.
I have to say that I think we set a standard of materials that had a big impact on publishing for adult learners and on the expectations
of adult education teachers. I think we need to take a minute to celebrate that.
Enjoy your birthday and your loving family. Always remember what a difference you have made in so many peoples’ lives – and in
With love and respect,
Caren Van Slyke
One of my favorite memories of Uncle Bob is the time he taught me about
the word "posterior". To put into context: It was the 5th grade, and I had just
gotten reprimanded at school for my overuse of the word "butt" during
recess, and was complaining quite a bit about it after school, while hanging
out at the Mitchell residence. Uncle Bob, never wanting to miss out on a fun
teachable moment, decided that this was the moment to enrich my
vocabulary: "Buttocks! Rear-end! Gluteus maximus! Derriere! Posterior!"
"Posterior?" I asked.
"Post-tee-ree-oooorrrr!" Uncle Bob proclaimed in his sing song-y voice...and
then he continued to sing and dance...as he wiggled his "posterior.”
Best vocabulary lesson. Ever.
d d d d d
We used to have an annual Easter egg hunt in the neighborhood. I don't know
how your father did it, but he talked Dave into wearing the Easter Bunny
costume. (Seeing Dave in that bunny outfit always brought me a smile.)
I always wondered if Bob ever wore that bunny outfit?
Happy Birthday, Bob!!! Have a hoppy, happy day.
Cecilia and Dave Sanders
Dear Uncle Bob,
I wish you the happiest of birthdays today! You have played such an influential role in my life that I thought it seemed fit to take a look
back and give thanks. Thank you for always welcoming me over to your home, I realize at times it must have felt that you had a third
daughter. Thank you for telling me jokes and making me laugh. I still recall the one about your old girlfriend being the same size both
ways. Lastly, thank you for always being supportive and helping us see that there is more to life than just things and that it really is all
about the people you spend it with. I cannot wait to see you this summer. Love,
d d d d d
To think of just one special memory has been a difficult task for me. For many years our families were so intertwined by our girls. So in
thinking of all the those memories, I realize that we owe you a huge thank you.
For you and Wanda being Melissa's adopted parents.
For always welcoming her into home and making her feel like one of the family.
For allowing us to be a part of your amazing daughter's life.
For ten years of cheering on our girls basketball teams. (Especially during the FLEX years)
For always saving us a seat at the games.
For eating the smokies at our parties:).
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BOB !!!!!!!!
Dave & Marcia Pumper
Happy Birthday Uncle Bob!
When I reflected on memories with Uncle Bob I realized that the impression Bob had in
my life was deeper than simply a specific memory. During my awkward pre-teen years,
when Bob entered my life, as my dad’s Chess book editor, I felt “seen” by him. I could tell
he believed in me and cared for me and his belief helped me to believe in myself. The
influence on an adolescent, by a caring adult, who shows interest, love, and concern, in
that child’s life is immeasurable. Bob is a generous man not just with finances but with
sharing his love and time with those outside of his family. He well earned his title “Uncle
Bob” to many due to his devotion, compassion, and investment in other people’s lives.
Uncle Bob was there for me during my parent’s recent divorce. I felt understood and
supported by Uncle Bob during this difficult time. I sought his wisdom as a “father
figure.” His being there for me helped me through a very difficult time.
Uncle Bob I love you and miss you! Thank you for being you and for sharing yourself with
d d d d d
Over the years of your family’s friendship with Lynn and John I have enjoyed my “brief” discussions with your dad. To say he
is a man of thoughts would be an understatement. Just when I think we were on opposite fences he would say something
that would suggest otherwise and likewise just when I thought we were in total agreement he would then present a view that
had me questioning everything. I will always be thankful though for one idea he shared with me … that being “confirmation
bias” that we will see what we want to see. Likewise his sharing of a book, "Predictable Irrationality” further opened my
mind to understanding human nature. As I consider what I do know of Bob … it is with his philosophy which he once shared
with me "My philosophy is simple: keep the faith and keep the fields plowed. Something good will grow.” He is a gardener
and while I can speak for what he grew from nature’s soil; I can attest that he had an influence on my mind. And a positive
one at that. :) Oh and it did seem he enjoyed his dogs :)
BOB ….HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU FROM GRACE & DAN HAYES….
MANY GOOD MEMORIES WITH YOU AND WANDA AND YOUR FAMILY VIA THE *BAIN
FAMILY* POTLUCKS AND CHESS TOURNAMENTS
YOU STILL LOOK LIKE JEFF BRIDGES TO ME
So many good memories, stories and lessons I remember about Bob. Bob played a tremendous,
positive role in my life and I am fortunate he chose to befriend me and my family. Earliest
memories include the scholastic chess community, meeting him at tournaments, he bringing his
chess teams to the juvenile correctional institution where I taught, his positive interactions with
my students there--a blessing for the students in lock-up and for me.
I remember our families' trips and our children getting together at the Northwest Chess
Convention in Seattle--karaoke in the evenings there. And later, Bob's encouragement after looking
at the chess curriculum I developed at school, saying I had a book there--for me to write a
scholastic chess book, and his generous editing and publishing of the chess books. His
encouragement and help to write the books made a wonderful, positive impact in my life.
I remember Bob's (and Wanda's) wonderful hospitality toward my family--having five children, not
many invitations came where the host invited us all, but Bob did, and he made each of my children
feel special and loved. Wonderful times, fellowship and food at Bob's house always.
Also, I enjoyed water sports with Bob--tubing and skiing with our kids at Foster and Fern Ridge--
and an occasional fishing or crabbing trip. Great times. Finally, Bob and my wonderful discussions
of life's great themes as represented in religion, literature, history, culture, current events and
politics--and his tolerance, open-mindedness and willingness to see the light and accept the truth
when presented to him by me. Well, sometime the truth had to be presented to Bob in wagers,
which he always promptly paid. Wagers where he mostly bet on the light, bright, optimistic view of
people with me taking the dark, dismal, pessimistic view. What surprised me most about Bob was
when he joined the Tea Party and voted for the Sarah Palin ticket.
Thank you, Bob, for being in my life, and wishing you many more wonderful years to come.
Thanks to Bob, I now know:
I never saw a purple cow.
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one.
*Sniff sniff* "What's that smell? I do believe it's your position!"
--Bob Mitchell to Bryant Brownell, while winning another chess game.
"Eggs is good.”
--Bob Mitchell, after an evening of being a Grammar Nazi at chess club.
(He was asked about the best thing to eat before a chess tournament.)
Happy Birthday, Bob!
d d d d d
Happy Birthday, Bob! I remember Bob As Coach Bob the best. How his love of chess with its intricacy, advanced strategy and
forward thinking motivated him to teach all those who were interested. Teaching, encouraging, supporting the chess team
became emblematic of his self sacrifice to share his love of the game of chess. His students evolved to become an extension of
his persona, winning with humility and losing with grace. I am sure these virtues went beyond gamesmanship and influenced
how they conducted their personal lives as well.
Not only the students of Crescent Valley, but his two daughters also developed the skills, patience and mastery of the game. I
as a Pediatrician had many patients, one who was particularly talented; he was All State soccer player, straight A student with
an eidetic memory and a measured IQ of 170. He also was intrigued with the game of chess and bragged that he had never
been beaten while playing online. His ego was also beyond measure. Humility was not inherent within his personality. It was
then that I challenged him to play Stacey online. The outcome was never in doubt; defeat was never more bitter! He begged
me to reveal his opponent' name but that was not to be.
I am sure it was through Bob's tutelage and Stacey's play, this student became a better person as a consequence. Please send
my best wishes to both your Mom and Dad when you see them for me. I hope this memory will bring joy to your father's
Sincerely, Michael Wong
Bob’s chess coaching, life lessons and positive energy have meant a lot to me. Bob also tends to find interesting and exciting
things to do, and seems to always have plans for new challenges.
I first met Bob through the chess club as a young person -- I think it was at least 18 years ago, when I was in 4th grade. I
called him Mr. Mitchell (because I didn’t know that “Dr. Mitchell” would have been more formally polite) and he always
went by “Bob” or “the ole’ chess coach”. Chess provided a lot of excitement and challenge, as Bob coached me and the
other students to win in many tournaments during my grade school years.
During one of my first chess club practices (at the library in Hoover school), I was playing Bob, and was down by about a
piece by the mid-game. To keep it interesting for both of us, Bob bet $200 that he would win. This inspired me to really
focus, because I was much too young to get $200 as a gift, and I won. (Bob, playing Black, had fianchettoed and castled
kingside, and I had castled queen-side and got my pieces in position to attack first. Bob may also have been distracted.)
Instead of money, Bob offered to give me some chess lessons instead. During a few weekend afternoons after that we
played a few games in his home office. I remember learning a few openings, on his large wood board with weighted pieces. I
think we might have also talked about math.
Around that time, I also enjoyed getting Mexican food after a long and hopefully victorious day at a chess tournament. I
usually had a taco salad. Bob would have a burrito or chili, and would tell a joke about a dead rat and Mexican chili that I
won’t repeat here.
I also remember the regional tournament where the chess club engineered a five-way tie so the maximum number of
people could go to the state tournament. (This plan enabled me to go to this tournament despite losing decisively to
Sometimes other topics such as math came up at chess club meetings. Bob shared interesting puzzles like the Hotel Infinity,
and told me not to spend too much time trying to trisect an angle.
Bob also suggested some excellent books for me to read. When I was learning chess, he gave me a copy of Chess Tactics for
Students to work through. He also gave me a copy of Gödel Escher Bach. When I was slightly older and reading anything I
thought might help me figure out the meaning of life, Bob let me borrow a stack of his philosophy and physics books, which
contained many ideas that at least helped me understand some of the limits of what people know now.
Boating trips with Bob were also fun -- Bob brought me and my family along on trips to the Fern Ridge reservoir, for sailing or
water skiing, both of which I had not done before. I also remember stopping at a certain deli Bob knew of that made a good
roast beef sandwich. Gliding across the sunny lake, with interesting people and possibly some good snacks, was one of those
times when it seems like everything is going well.
One cloudy sailing day there was significant wind and waves several feet tall. For maximum excitement, Bob steered so the boat
would lean way over (heel), and explained how the boat had a heavy keel and would not actually tip, despite the waves and
spray. Another day, the wind became totally calm and we had to sail very slowly back to the harbor. I think Bob might have
rowed a bit too.
Standing up on the skis and jumping the wake was great, though I never figured out how to drop one ski and not fall over.
Bumping the other young peoples’ inner tubes and often falling off was exciting as well, especially when Bob would turn the
boat so the inner tubes would go outside the wake and bounce across the chop.
A funny story:
One time at a chess tournament Bob pointed out that the rules didn’t prohibit standing up, pacing, or even leaning over the
opponent’s shoulder while thinking about my next move. So, I tried this. My opponent stood up and sat on the other (my) side
of the board, so I sat down at my opponent’s side. Right after that, Bob walked by to watch, and looked like he was pondering
how I had gotten into such a weak position, up until I moved one of the opposite color’s pieces.
A few lessons learned:
Never tell your opponent how to win. (Bob reminded me not to do this after one game in the state chess tournament. I had
tried to hint to my opponent that he should make the wrong move, but was actually much less subtle than I had thought.)
How to play chess: castle early, develop pieces, control the center, etc., and play in a fair and sportsmanlike way. If you really
want to win, practice to learn the relevant tactics better than your opponents.
Don’t play Roulette, but if you do, don’t try to always come out ahead by doubling your bet every time you lose.
Happy Birthday! From, Scott
What do you call a brown sheep with horns?
That's an inside joke with Bob that he will understand.
You might also tell him "it's not the amount of years in a life that is important, it's the amount of life in the years."
Bob, you were an inspirational chess coach to each of my children. Thank you for making a positive difference in their lives.
Although I think you enjoyed their winning tournaments more than they did I do believe that they enjoyed the journey as
well. They fully believed the buttons they got at tournaments that said "Chess makes you smart.” I believe it worked!
What about those times we had sailing and water skiing! You were always generous and helped me put life into my years.
We enjoyed many movie nights together and I have fond memories of those times. You also gave me some refreshing
pauses with trips to the beach during my difficult time of unemployment. Thanks for being a good friend.
Didn't you and Scott have a substantial financial bet on the outcome of chess game? Happy Birthday!
d d d d d
Thanks for the many years of chess lessons and parties at your house. Chess was one of the first passions I had in life. I
remember that whenever we'd play you'd let me take back moves until I finally won. In many situations the logical thinking
I first learned in chess is applicable. I also remember going to the state chess tournament and Joe and I would take turns
playing games because we would get tired. Thanks again for all the good memories!
A Poem for Bob
Long ago in Manhattan, I met Shauna’s Dad
I figured that he raised HER, so he’s gotta be rad.
He said call me BOBUTSKI with gusto and flair.
I knew at that moment that this guy was rare.
He was going on a trip, to a place I held dear.
I said ‘please, some rocks or some dirt – will you send them here?’
He said absolutely, and he went on his way
And for a couple months, I kept hearing him say
That I got something grand, something amazing and true
But with it came rules – and from that point I knew.
This gift was amazing, it was special, maybe feared?
But most importantly it required trust put in the man with the beard.
I was told the rules – too many to share
But they included no candy, no cheese, it all seemed quite fair.
The gift was a relic, it was sacred, it showed truth
And when I got it – I cherished it – it was known as ‘THE TOOTH.’
Happy, HAPPY birthday, Bobutski. All our lives are richer, more exciting,
and better with you in them.
(the one with the tooth…you know what I mean?)
To my Uncle Bobootski and a yaya too! Always love you for your amazing presence of loving care. So many amazing
memories, words can't express how grateful I am to have you as my Uncle. Thank you for always bringing joy to my
life and always being there. Wishing you the best birthday ever! LOVE YOU WITH ALL MY HEART.
Your favorite niece, Tania
d d d d d
Uncle Bob knows how to make guests and family feel welcome. Every time I would enter the doors in Corvallis and
say "Hi Uncle Bob!", he would reply, "Uncle Heather!” This would always put a smile on my face. Another fun
memory I have is the "Outback" dance move. Uncle Bob got these little kids jumping around in a circle on one foot,
waving one arm in the air. So funny! We are very lucky to have such a caring, thoughtful, fun uncle! Happy Birthday,
d d d d d
Too seldom do we meet individuals who possess the talent to inspire a thirst for knowledge, while making it feel as
though it were nothing more than a game of play. As a young child, I took delight in your engaging explanations of
the world and felt compelled to learn more and do better. Regardless of the topic of conversation, you empowered
me by instilling confidence in both my intellect and physical capabilities. Having someone like you in my corner made
all the difference - No matter the endeavor, I was always comforted by the fact that my “smart” uncle believed in me.
Happy Birthday, Old Man. May you continue to inspire future generations to be their best.
Celina-belina-bologna-what’s the rest again?
1. Steve says: Bob, you have been so supportive of my real estate business and I wanted to say Thanks. You are so
generous and basically my best real estate client, Brother. I would not be in real estate today without you. Plus you
make it fun.
2. Bobbie and Steve say: Bob, we really have enjoyed all the times you wanted to go to Baldy's BBQ.
3. Bobbie says: Bob, Thanks for 39 years of fun and laughs. I love being your barber and hair dye specialist, thanks for
being the guinea pig. By the way, your hair looks awesome.
4. Steve says: Mr. Bob, I'm super amazed and pleased you enjoy the beauty of different types of sunsets, the evening
sky, the stars, and moon. I enjoy viewing all these too. And commenting on the visual views of many areas of the earth,
I too enjoy the views.
5. Bobbie and Steve say: HAPPY 50th BIRTHDAY again.
I can't imagine your dad's going to be 70 this year! Wow, and he still looks great.
One good memory we remember of your dad is when he had on funny teeth on his 65th birthday (I think) at the
Corvallis house. I can't seem to find that picture anywhere, but I thought that moment was hilarious. I hope somebody
has a copy of that photo somewhere.
Garry and Tracy
Bob Mitchell – passion for life and generosity
In the years I've know Bob Mitchell, he has demonstrated a passion for living life
to its fullest. Whether he is sharing a wonderful meal (Baldy's ribs, a steak at
Mesa Grill, Elk Chili at Longboard Louies, or a Costco chicken), he is savoring each
bite and wants everyone to join in the experience.
Bob shares his wonderful books he's read, his truck for moving me (several
times) and his home (storing my furniture).
Having Bob as my friend, I know when he asks, “How's life Lorna?" I know he
truly cares and wants to engage in great conversation.
I want to say thank you Bob for your friendship, your lessons I've learned about
passion for life and creating memories and sense of humor and your generous
Above all- you make the greatest Hot Chocolate in the world and
word is spreading like wildfire!!!
Have a fantastic birthday my friend!!
I met Bob when he joined the Corvallis Community Choir. Shauna, our pianist at the time,
told me she was urging her dad to join us. I told her I would be glad to welcome him.
When he first came to choir he was convinced he couldn't sing (except in the shower). We
visited about music, books, singing, his family. In fact, Bob was kind enough to invite me
to several family events; what a great treat that was! As time passed he got into the spirit
of things, singing with more confidence, enjoying the music, making friends in the choir.
Since Bob moved to Bend we have missed his presence in our choir. My hope is that he
can find a group to sing with in Bend; as he knows, music is good for the soul.
A most happy birthday, Bob. ~Marj Ratliff
d d d d d
Happy Birthday, Bob!
I learned much about life from Bob. These are the three things that stick out the most.
1. Loving and compassion is the answer.
2. Nothing is what it seems to be.
3. Observe and don't react.
Bob is one of my favorite human being on this earth. He is intelligent, some time funny, and have so much love and compassion for
people. Over the years I have known him, he had help me with some rough time.
I am forever grateful to have him as a friend. Another wonderful character in Bob is that he is open to different levels of conversation;
he is open to most subjects and this make him my favorite person to talk to.
Years ago, I lived in a student housing and my room had an electrical fire and no one was hurt or blamed for the incident. Three plus
years later, I received a letter from that property's insurance company demanding that I pay the expense for the damage and more.
They remodeled that whole floor and want me to chip in.
It was me against the insurance company lawyer. Bob took on this challenge by studying the report, and pictures that were
documented by the fire marshal. Using his knowledge of physics, he challenged the fire marshal of the written report. We had two
meetings with the judge, the first was without the fire marshal, and the last was with the fire marshal there to answer all the
questions Bob had laid out for him. Well, we won the case. Bob was my lawyer and he was awesome.
d d d d d
Bob, you have so many great stories and interesting ideas to share that I am never bored when talking to you. I remember the
discussions we had about Singapore Math and other math topics. Your wise parenting tips and book suggestions were always fun to
hear... Thank you for being a great friend! - Quan
d d d d d
Thank you, Uncle Bob, for coming to my birthday celebrations over the years! - Paul Lim
Happy Birthday, Uncle Bob - our friend and family
I can’t believe that Uncle Bob (UB) is turning seventy! To me, UB is forever young, lively, and wise.
Wise/favorite words from UB:
Smile and everything will be beautiful
A man got to do - what a man got to do (similar saying for a woman)
A fun story about UB and the chili crab: Probably nineteen years ago, that was before Kinho was even here. Gosh, how time
flies! We have Bob, Wanda, Shauna, and Stacey over for chili crab dinner at the HP provided housing in Walnut Glade. That must
be during the winter crab season. Undoubtedly we are cheap because eating at home is more economical than eating out. Lam,
doesn’t matter how or where he learns to cook, always cooks when we have company. One of the dishes that he knows how to
cook is chili crab, a signature dish in Singapore. Crabs are stir-fried with gravy of spicy sauce and tomatoes sauce and other
secret ingredients. To get to the crab meat out of the shell, Asians usually lick off the gravy on the crab and just crack the shells
with our teeth and reach for the meat with our chopsticks. Usually only two fingers of both our hands are messy. UB learn to eat
chili crab the hard way. He tried to crack the shell between a pair of pliers and the whole piece of crab slipped off and bounced
off to Shauna’s beautiful hair and then dropped on the white cushioned-chair and landed on the new white carpet. That was our
first impression of UB and his flying chili crab. We find this friend very interesting and decided to keep him as a friend forever.
Just to add spices to the story, before the dinner, UB practices, at home, to learn how to use chopsticks just to impress his Asian
friends. It turned out that UB is more Asian than his Asian friend because his Asian friends usually eat with spoon and fork. The
only time they use chopsticks are when eating noodles.
UB is more Asian than his Asian friend because he enjoys chicken feet when we go to have dim-sum. When I meet UB, it is like
the East meets the West. It is true for me because through him I see life from a different perspective. He helps me understand
to be individualistic and yet get a balance of being part of a team.
UB is a great listener and he cares for his friends and family. He is always there to help: to fix a hole in the wall, help Kinho with
math and physics problems, even help Kinho to learn to drive in this huge Silverado truck! UB is very generous with spending
time with his friends and family. He will listen to our complaints and share his views that most of the times make our problem
sounds minor and resolvable. He uses a calm way to view problems and help his friends. Oh yes, UB generously buy a flat screen
TV as a birthday present for his friend and many generous gifts of toys for Kinho.
Of course, I am saying all the great things about UB, but behind every successful man, there are his supporting wife, Wanda and
his beloved children Shauna and Stacey and all the other supporting members of the family.
Pia Wah, Lam, and Kinho
Bob, I have to say the 2010 WSOP
Main Event is simultaneously the
most memorable and most
traumatic poker event I have ever
played, and probably will ever play.
Who would have thought that I'd
get the crazy opportunity to play
poker on TV? Then, to absolutely
crumble under the pressure - who
would have thought I'd do that,
after years of prep otherwise? And
for both of us to last as long as we
did - wonderful, exhausting, and
We almost made it, Bob! I know we
can do it. Both of us, just one-beat-
away from the money. Maybe
someday we'll get a chance to try
again. But that memory of being
swarmed by agents and getting
mic'ed up for TV will last way
beyond any prize-money.
Thanks for that opportunity. It's
something I will cherish and share
with my kids and friends for many
Unlike many of the contributors to this book, I met Bob when I was a (mostly) grown man. Another unusual
aspect of our relationship is that we went directly from being relative strangers to being father and son. These
facts combined have, I believe, given me a relatively unique perspective on Bob Mitchell and his place in the
You only need to spend a few hours with Bob to see how important he is to the people around him. In the years
before Shauna and I married, my primary memories of Bob involve massive “family” gatherings that included
just about everyone in Corvallis. In the very beginning, it was hard to understand (from an outside perspective)
what all these people had in common. After the first dinner, however, the answer became as clear as day. It was
Bob who brought all those very different people together. He was the one with a special, silly name for all the
kids. He was the one discussing politics (always in a measured and thoughtful way) with the adults around the
kitchen table. He was the one playing chess and pool with the teens, or singing silly songs for no particular
reason. Bob was the glue that held this unusual collection together. He was the sun that kept all these diverse
planets (and their little moons) in orbit.
As time passed, I learned much more about Bob (now Dad) and how important he is to the people in his life. He
is much, much more than a clown for the kids and a friend for the adults. He is a coach and a mentor, to the
young and not so young alike. He is a source of near-endless enthusiasm, compassion, and generosity. Bob is a
brilliant, creative, sweet, gentle, compassionate, humble, and wonderful man. Is there anyone in the world who
doesn’t want more of these things in their life? And here we find all of it in one convenient package!
Most people are the heroes of their own narrative, but it’s a rare and very special thing to become a hero in
someone else’s story. If we’re lucky, most of us will play this part for our spouses and children. Bob, in
comparison, is a heroic figure in more lives that we could easily count, my own included, and this book is just a
limited testament to this fact.
Happy birthday, Dad! And thank you for everything.
Bob is very generous and giving. Here are a few examples:
• A few months after we met, Bob decided he wanted to go night skiing at Hoodoo, but he didn’t have any money.
Dianne had some money so Bob took me to Dianne’s house and asked Dianne to borrow $50. On that $50, he took
me, Dianne, and himself to have fun. We ate grapefruit all the way to Hoodoo. He chose 176 cm skis – 6 foot long
skis for me to wear (my first time skiing) and I could never get up on them so we sat and played and had fun in the
snow instead. Even though he never had a chance to ski – he was generous and giving, using the money that he
borrowed (and paid back) to take all of us to have a good time.
• When we were poor and I was working the night shift, every night, Bob would take Shauna to Church’s Chicken to
get fried chicken for $1.39. He would give Shauna the chicken and eat the cole slaw. Shauna would say, “Dad, you
have to have some of this! It tastes so good!”
• One time we didn’t have any money so we decided to have a garage sale. Even though we needed the money, he
practically gave everything away!
• When your father invites one family for dinner, he invites the whole neighborhood!
• Another funny story: The first time Bob went to Taiwan in 1977, he was eating nothing but Chinese food. We were
visiting the National Museum in Taipei. Bob was so hungry for American Food. When he saw a sign for “Western
Chow,” he was so sure Western Chow meant Western food and he was so excited for it so we had to follow the
signs to the Western Chow dynasty display. The next day, we used my expired Air Force ID card to get into the
commissary and he had the hamburger he had been waiting for!
Of all the lessons you've taught me in life (and tried to teach me) and continue to bludgeon
me over the head with, there is at least one that I have actually learned (I don't want to admit to having learned more,
you might hold it against me)...
You are a generous father and friend. You are generous with your time, money, and friendship. You have instilled this
generosity in me. I have learned to treat my friends to dinner and to donate my time to my community, and my life has
been much richer because of it.
Your generosity has not only been a leading example from me, but has also enabled me to pay it forward. When you
and mom help me with Lily and Leo, I am able to teach chess club and watch the children experience the same joy in
chess that I did as a child. When you and mom help me financially, I am able to volunteer tutor students who otherwise
could not afford it.
I am proud to be a generous person, and I owe that to you and the example you have always set for me.
Happy Birthday, Dad. You are a wonderful father and the best Papa that I could hope to have for Lily and Leo.
I have countless special memories that I could share about my dad. One memory in particular stands out in my mind
because of an important life lesson that came along with it.
Many years ago, my dad and I were playing a game of Scattergories with a neighbor. During one particular round, we
were each challenged to come up with a president’s name beginning with the letter, “F.”
My answer was left blank and so was our neighbor’s.
“Millard Fillmore,” my dad read aloud when it was his turn.
“Millard Fillmore?!” Our neighbor hooted in disbelief. He laughed and jokingly accused my dad of making up his answer.
“Well,” my dad replied chuckling, “Millard Fillmore? Fillard Millmore? What’s the difference? There had to be someone
with a name like that!”
Our neighbor slapped my dad on the back and they laughed together over the joke as my dad crossed out his answer.
Later that night, I opened our dictionary and looked up Millard Fillmore. There he was: Millard Fillmore, the 13th
president of the United States.
In that moment, I learned an important life lesson that I have never forgotten about putting kindness and friendship first
over being right.
Happy birthday, Dad! I’ve only been around for half your life, so you’re still 35 to me! Here’s to many more years of
wisdom, laughter, conversations, and much, much more.
My favorite things
about Papa are:
• His name changing
• The way he talks
• He reads stories
and plays funny
• He can do the wall
crash so loud it
hurts his ears!
Happy Birthday, Papa!
My favorite things about Papa are:
• He reads to me
• He gives me tic-tacs
• He tells me stories
• He gives me hugs
Happy Birthday, Papa! Love, Lily, Winter, and Leo
Here’s to many more years of
stories, memories, life lessons,
adventures, and more!