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Bobby Joe Reynolds

Obituary for Bobby Joe Reynolds

October 18, 1940 - February 17, 2019
San Antonio, Texas | Age 78

Obituary

BY MARY REYNOLDS, HIS WIFE OF 55 YEARS

Bob did pretty well for himself for a poor farm boy. His father was a vegetable peddler back in West Helena, Arkansas. He lived with him for nine years, but that suddenly changed when, after a bitter custody battle, his mother won custody of him, and he went to live with her on a farm in Marksville, LA. Bob knew at an early age he wasn't meant to be a farmer, and after he went away to college he never returned to farm life again.

He majored in Music first, then changed to Sociology when he realized he didn't like music enough to make a career of it. After college he joined the Army first, then switched to the Air Force. His first assignment was at Barksdale Air Force Base, and that's where he met me. It's a kind of a funny story. It was Memorial Day, and a lot of people were off from work. I was shopping in a large shopping center and had no idea he was following me until he approached me. I had a plantar's wart on the bottom of one of my feet. If it hadn't been for that ingrown wart I wouldn't have gone to a drugstore with a café and sat down with him, but I had to get off my feet. He talked me into going out with him. I invited him to my house because I knew that anybody who could face my father and not run away was probably sincerely interested. He passed the test, not with my father, but with me. Nobody would pass with him. After about a three-month courtship we were married.

Fourteen months later we had our first child. Unfortunately, he suffered brain damage, which caused slow development, affected his speech, and made him blind in the right eye. When he was 18 months old doctors and psychologists told us to put him in an institution, that he would never be able to function at all. I couldn't do that, and Bob supported me in my decision. We went through many trials and tribulations over the years, mostly due to the ignorance of others, but Bob was always there for me and our son, no matter what. This child that they tried to institutionalize is now 54 years old. All the time he was growing and changing little by little, and over the last two years he has made large strides towards being normal and has grown into a person of fine character, even though he hasn't been able to overcome all his problems. He is a son to be proud of. This trait of Bob's of always being there when the chips are down has carried on throughout our married lives, and it's something I've admired and appreciated in him so very much over the years.

He was soon transferred to Little Rock Air Force Base where he worked in the old Titan II Missile Program, and after 8 ½ years on active duty he decided to get out of the Air Force. We then moved to Dallas where he went to work for TI. He wasn't too happy there, but one day our next door neighbor made a chance remark that he might be able to get into the ART Program at Carswell AFB in Ft. Worth. He immediately went there to apply, and sure enough he was accepted.
After son number two was born we moved to Kokomo, Indiana because Carswell closed. We hated it there and Bob was continually looking for other jobs within the ART Program when he was accepted for a position at a base in the desert near Lancaster, CA. What a fun and funky place in the 70's. After 8 or 9 years we moved to San Antonio, TX for 10 years, then to the Atlanta, GA area for 8 ½ years, then he retired after 30 years of combined service, and we moved to Pensacola, FL. I didn't like that at all, and was threatening to move back to San Antonio by myself to help my second son, who was struggling with his business. After Bob realized I meant it he decided to go too. He worked for a while in real estate, but when he started teaching he found the love of his life.

His students will never know just how much of himself he put into his work, the hours he spent to create interesting and informative classes with the latest information for his students. Many of his students loved him for working with them when they had personal problems, as not all teachers would. Most of the students going to school in San Antonio are also working, and they have many problems that cause them to miss classes at times. He sympathized with their struggles and helped and supported them in any way he could. Some of his students must have appreciated his support because at the end of his last class the whole class gave him a standing ovation, a fitting end to an outstanding career.

Just a little tidbit about Bob that a lot of people don't know. He was quite the showoff on the dance floor in his later years. If you don't believe it, just ask some of his friends.

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