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Taft Midway Driller - Taft, CA
  • Bob Stone

  • He was born on August 30, 1921 in Trenton, New Jersey, and died March 15, 2013. He played football at Taft Junior College from 1940-1942 and returned to work for Standard Oil Company from 1945-1977.
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  • Bob Stone played football at Taft Junior College from 1940-1942 and returned to work for Standard Oil Company from 1945-1977.
    Bob Stone joined Pete Gianopolis on Bill Putman's Tiger Cruise several years ago.
    Bob Stone was born on August 30, 1921 in Trenton, New Jersey, and died March 15, 2013. He was 91 years of age.
    Bob came West with his parents & siblings in a Rio Speed Wagon when he was a toddler. Eventually the family settled near Red Bluff & more children were born, for a total of 12. Bob attended Red Bluff High School where he served as Student Body President, captain of the football team, & was an active member of the FFA auto mechanic club. Following graduation, he was recruited to play football in Taft, which is where he met his future wife, Frances Gordon. Bob graduated from Taft Junior College in 1942 before enlisting in the Army.
    During World War II, Bob was stationed at the Yuma and became a staff sergeant. Frances worked in Los Angeles for North American Aviation. On March 25, 1943 she eloped to Yuma and they were married by an Army chaplin.
    Bob's desire to become a farmer or Ag Teacher was set aside when he got a job with Standard Oil in Taft. Bob was a diesel mechanic on drilling rigs until his retirement in 1977. Bob was a Boy Scout Leader, Rec Center Board Member, member of the Elks, & Quarterback club.
    Bob, Frances, & children started spending summer vacations tent camping at Bass Lake in the early 1950's. Bob is remembered by many as the guy who taught them how to water ski. He'd patiently encourage with his famous line, "Just give it one more time." He was also the Good Samaritan who got their boat motor running.
    In 1970, the family's dream of a cabin at Bass Lake came true when lifelong friend, encouraged them to buy a lot. Many friends participated in the unique DIY "cabin Raising" in May 1971.
    Upon early retirement, Bob and Frances moved into their modest vacation cabin overlooking Bass Lake. They soon realized it was inadequate for their needs. They purchased five acres on Road 274, & built the house that became their home for many years. Bob became the "Keeper of the Vehicles"- cars, boats, motor homes- for friends. Bob & Frances were socially active; enjoyed card groups, BBQ, entertaining, events at town hall, local politics & Bass Lake Boat Club. Bob was known for growing the sweetest strawberries.
    As Bob's health & mechanical abilities declined, the large homestead became too much for Frances to handle & they moved back into the cabin. Bob answered the telephone with "Here –I'll let you talk to the boss." He frequently told stories of his family and made comments about "The Golden Years."
    Page 2 of 2 - Bob lived in a Memory Care facility in his final years & is remembered for his happy disposition, clapping response to music, great skin, hearty appetite & his rhymes, particularly his cheery "Hidy, hidy, ho…Here we go!"
    Bob is survived by brother, Fred, of Woodland, & sister, Emily of Paskenta. He is also survived by his son, Bob, of O'Neils; daughter, Carol, of Millerton Lake; granddaughter Tricia of SLO & grandson Dylan of Fresno.

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