Robert Llewellyn Herhusky (“Bob”)
March 20, 1929-March 22, 2020
Robert Llewellyn Herhusky (“Bob”), formerly of Squaw Valley, passed away on Sunday, March 22, 2020, at the age of 91. Bob died peacefully at his home in Los Gatos, California with his large and loving family, by his side near and far. Bob was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. He will be forever remembered for his gentle eyes, caring heart, mischievous sense of humor, and unconditional love for his family and community.
Bob was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan on March 20, 1929, to father Floyd John “Cy” Herhusky and mother Marie Sophia Sorensen Herhusky. Bob attended the University of Michigan, where he was a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. At the University of Michigan, he met Mary Lou Porter. They married in Flossmoor, Illinois in 1955. Bob enlisted as a navy pilot after college graduation and was stationed in Japan initially and served the Naval Air Force with honor. Bob’s final tour for the navy was Operation Blue Moon, performing low-level reconnaissance flights over Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Bob and Mary Lou had six sons, born within seven years from 1956 through 1963. Originally settling in San Mateo, doing corporate work for Memorex, he and Mary Lou craved a simpler life for their family and decided to move to the mountains. They first lived in Tahoe Tavern and then settled into their family home on Trail’s End Court in Squaw Valley.
Bob and Mary Lou operated their family business, Robert’s of Truckee, on Commercial Row (now the site of “The Cooking Gallery”) from 1972 through 1994 and were also partners in ArtTruckee. Bob and Mary Lou were active in the Downtown Merchants Association and were also instrumental in helping to create and produce the Truckee Follies beginning in 1981. Their community philanthropy also extended over the years to the Lake Tahoe Summer Musical Festival, Tahoe Music Conservatory and Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation.
Mary Lou passed away unexpectedly in 1999. Bob was bereft but was fortunate to find love again with Jan Nelson who he married in 2004. Jan was quickly assimilated into the large Herhusky clan and she and Bob enjoyed traveling and family gatherings and lots of laughter. Jan became a beloved member of the Herhusky family and was by Bob’s side until his final day. Bob and Jan were living in Los Gatos at The Terraces at the time of Bob’s death. Bob was active in the community there as well. He was a member of the Terraces Old Fogies Follies, a singing group and also helped run a tech group to assist the other residents with operation of their iPhones, computers and other toys.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents and his wife Mary Lou. He is survived by his sister MaryAnne, wife Jan Nelson; children Robert Herhusky, John Herhusky (and wife Sompett), Michael Herhusky (and wife Evamarie) Stephen Herhusky (and wife Martina), Brian Herhusky (and wife Denise) and Mark Herhusky (and wife Stacey); grandchildren Adam, Taylor, Allyson, Patrick, Nicholas, Camille, Mason, Kevin, Mia, Brandon, Lindsey, Monique, Nicole, Brooke and Ryan, who fondly referred to Robert as “Papa Choo”, for his love of trains.
Bob’s amazing life will be celebrated in a private family memorial. People wishing to honor his lifelong commitment to the arts and community can make donations to the Mary Lou Herhusky Scholarship for the Arts through Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation (P.O. Box 366, Truckee, CA 96160 or the Hospice of the Valley, Los Gatos, 4580 Union Avenue, San Jose, CA 95124.
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