Robert Alexander Waller
Robert A. Waller died peacefully at his home in Pasadena, California, surrounded by his wife and six children on July 7, 2019. He was 91 years old. Bob Waller, as he preferred to be called by all he met, had a fierce will to live and valiantly fought the effects of Parkinson's and strokes for several years. Born in Chicago, Illinois, on May 22, 1928, Robert Alexander Waller was the second son of Chicago Alderman, James Breckenridge Waller and Sarah Given Waller. His older brother, Jim, predeceased him in 1999. In the mid 1950s, Bob moved from Chicago to Los Angeles to start his business career and soon after, a family of his own. In 1960, Bob met the love of his life, Judy Trepanier, and the two were married soon after on October 14, 1960. The couple settled in San Marino, California, and began their family, which ultimately grew to six children after moving to Pasadena. He was a graduate of Occidental College (which he fondly referred to as "the Princeton of the West") and took graduate classes at both USC and UCLA. Bob was a successful businessman, philanthropist, community volunteer, and a serial entrepreneur, creating and investing in many companies ranging from stamps, to coins, to department stores, to venture capital, to real estate investments. Bob sat on numerous boards, and served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of real estate development companies, Northern California Developers Financial and R.A. Waller & Company. Bob was an active investor in both private and public companies. Outside of his professional pursuits, Bob made an impact in a variety of arenas. As a longtime member of the Jonathan Club, Bob was among the founding members of the Toastmasters organization within the Jonathan Club, eventually becoming Toastmasters Area Governor. After many years of Little League coaching, Bob became President of Pasadena Southwest Little League and Commissioner of Region 13 of the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO). Bob embraced philanthropy, and recognized the importance of giving back to his community, establishing the Robert A. Waller Foundation to provide support to a wide assortment of charitable organizations. Bob was passionate about many things and had many interests, including being an early adopter of technology. He was one of the first avid fans of Apple computers, which included being actively involved in the San Gabriel Valley Macintosh User Group for decades. Among his other interests were education, health, fitness, volunteering, mentoring others, and animals. He was very curious and loved meeting new people. He had a love and appreciation for magic that he passed on to his grandchildren. He was focused on personal improvement and made a point of striving for constant and never-ending improvement. He was always an optimist and exuded an incredible positive energy that drew people to him like a magnet. He had tremendous wisdom that he shared through a collection of sayings that have become part of the Waller family lexicon. Bob Waller will be remembered as an amazing and loving husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather, great-grandfather, mentor, and friend. He was incredibly generous and touched the lives of so many. The Waller house was always a "safe haven" for both neighborhood kids and animals, taking in and nurturing many "strays" along the way. What he loved most was spending time with his wife and family. He always put family first. The Waller Family was blessed to have many amazing "Waller Family Vacations" and holidays with siblings, spouses, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, creating many memories that we will never forget. His devotion to his family is his most important and marked legacy. He is survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Judy, and by his six children, Rob (wife Julie and children, Hailey, Lindsey, and Gracie), Sarah (husband Tom and children, Ryan, Samantha, Shauna, grandchild, Adalyn), Bill (wife Shauna and children, Natalie, Blake, and Alison), Mark, Ellen (husband Mark and children, Chase and Hayden), John (wife Michele and children Brooke and Alex), and his half-sister Wilda. He set a great example for all of us, and he touched many people profoundly during his journey through life. The world is a better place having had him in it. He will be greatly missed by all that knew him.
Remembering Robert Alexander Waller
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