Dr. Robert F. Vahey
Bob loved to build, especially homes, families, and individuals, often a house along the way, in which to put them. His emphasis being, helping others build relationships and possibilities into their own lives and others’. The primary building blocks are “unconditional love and unmerited grace” with Christ as the mortar holding it all together. He wanted a home for each person, a family of relationships, and Christ always at the table; a big door and windows wide to the world, with a welcome mat on the threshold for each of us! Family and ministry were one with Dr. Bob.
Bob and Barbara Adrian Parker, his partner in ministry, were married in 1960 and for the next 55 years plus, served United Methodist Churches in Western Washington, along with their family. Their children Arnold, Linn, Gena, Paul and Randy, also included several foster children along the way. There was always room for dogs and cats! With Bobbie’s Special Education training and teaching background, and Bob’s training in family therapy, children have always been a main emphasis. Both have always said, “just delight in your children, and they will turn out fine.” With loving support and challenges appropriate to their age levels, children do! Bob always had a competitive spirit in sports, his ministry and life; just give it all out there on the playing field called life!
Bob was born Robert Charles Fred: to Robert C. Vahey and Corrine Perry Vahey, the 11th of August in 1936 in Los Angeles. He was the second of three children, having an older sister Patty by three years and Kathy being the younger by 12 years. He was raised in Southern California, in Manhattan Beach and Glendale. He graduated from Glendale High School, continuing to college at State Universities with undergraduate degrees in Engineering and Sociology; advanced degrees being a Masters at Claremont School of Theology, and a Doctorate in Ministry from San Francisco Theology Seminary.
‘Children, Justice for each and all, Relationships and celebrating “the journey with Christ as your companion”’ says it all. It is important for each of us to understand: God loves each one as if they were the only one and all, the way God loves each. Life is gift, celebrate it!
“One family,” (our family, plus our church families) participated in the building of the cabin on Shaw Island, in the San Juans. It has been a joy to share, down through the years.
Bob is survived by Bobbie (“Punkin”), Arnold, Linn, Gena (Doug), Paul (Sheri), and Randy (Heidi) with 12 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren, plus his sister Kathy, and several nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations may be made to: Children’s Hospital in Seattle, Mary Bridge in Tacoma, UMCOR, and the Port Orchard UMC.
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