Robert (Bob) G. Blackman, age 84, of Mendon, passed away on Tuesday, March 21, 2023 at Ascension Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo. He was born on January 25, 1939 in Sault Ste. Marie, the son of Robert L. and Norma G. (Fox) Blackman. Bob attended and graduated from Mather High School in Munising in 1957. After high school, he would enlist in the United States Marine Corps. On November 28, 1959 Bob would marry Anne Shirley at St. Monica’s in Kalamazoo. He would work for a short while at Allied Paper Corp before he would become the head custodian for Portage Public Schools. He was known to the students and staff as the “Cookie Monster”. He was responsible for getting the elementary schools involved in recycling in the early years and was a mentor to many students over the years. He enjoyed traveling with his family, especially on forced and surprised vacations. Bob was a simple man who liked his simple life. A collector of many antiques, ranging from Soo Line model trains, to Elvis memorabilia. Most importantly, Bob had a sense of humor that he would often share at Christmas and at the dinner table, playing jump, shoot, score with peas and corn with his children’s drinks. He attended every event that his children and grandchildren were involved with.
Robert is survived by his wife of 63 years, Anne. Children; Cheri Collins (Thomas Mick) of Portage, Terri (Bryan) Kitchen of Vicksburg, Robert (aka Andy) and Bonnie Blackman of Kalamazoo, and Patricia Wright of Kalamazoo. 8 grandchildren; Alan Collins, Amber Murray, Jason Kitchen, Bethany Irwin, Jennifer Kitchen, Erika Childress, Ella Ackerman, and Peyton Wright. 10 great-grandchildren. And many in-laws and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and two of his aunts.
The family with receive friends at the Eickhoff Funeral Home in Mendon on Sunday, March 26, 2023 from 2 until 4pm, with a Rosary beginning at 4:00. A Funeral Mass will take place at St. Edward Catholic Church on Monday, March 27, 2023 at 11am with Msgr Tom Martin officiating. Following the luncheon at St. Edward, burial will take place at Portage South Cemetery (corner of S. Westnedge Ave and E. Osterhout Ave) at 2:00. It is suggested that donations in Bob’s honor be made to a charity of donor’s choice. Condolences and memories may be expressed to the family on eickhofffuneralhome.com