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The world has lost another wonderful man. Robert “Bob” William Bartlomiej passed away June 22, 2022 at his home. Robert was born in Alpena, Michigan on August 30, 1936. The son of the late Walter and Rose (Hilla) Bartlomiej, Bob graduated the Class of 1955 from Alpena Catholic Central High School. While in high school and shortly thereafter, he started his work years at the A & P grocery store. Later he joined and served his country in the United States Army. After his time in the service, he moved to Detroit, Michigan to attend Barber College. His barber work found him in Royal Oak and Hillman, Michigan and eventually he moved back to his hometown. Upon meeting the love of his life, Patricia “Pat” Werstine, they married at Our Lady of Queen Martyrs Parish in Birmingham, Michigan on May 26, 1962. After returning to Alpena, Bob found work at Alpena Power Company, retiring in 1993. Not a person to just retire from life, his next adventure was that of being caretaker at North Point Lodge, LaFarge Sales Division and also working at Karpus-Hunter Funeral Home until 2019.
Pat survives as does sons, David of Vanderbilt and Brian (Carla) of Alpena. Also surviving is granddaughter, Ashlee, and daughter in law, Carmen, both of Boise, Idaho. Along with the passing of his parents Walt and Rose was an infant sister.
Years of playing music, Bob provided many folks pleasure in hearing his expertise on the accordion. He holds a place in the hearts of those who got to hear him along with all the musicians that counted him “one of the best polka, big band and easy listening players”. In his later years the violin that his father played became part of this legacy of and with music. As a private pilot he also earned a commercial pilot’s license and enjoyed flying fall color tours. As a man of many activities, he volunteered at Besser Credit Union and for many years he gained much respect and trust from members of that institution. Bob enjoyed the pleasure of rabbit hunting with his beloved beagles. He helped to start the Thunder Bay Beagle Club and M.E.U.P. Beagle Club of the Upper Peninsula, serving as organizer and treasurer for both clubs. His memory of starting an education at the one room Spain School and all the work of being a farm boy helped lead him to many years of planting and harvesting his vegetable gardens. It was second nature for Bob to be in the woods as well as working up the ground for planting with his tractor. Pat and Bob enjoyed many hours on their motorcycle, joining a group of friends to travel to familiar and new places. The adventures were memorable! The Bartlomiej’s left the motorcycle at home and traveled by truck for a summer vacation in Alaska.
Bob’s parish is All Saints Church where he was a lector for many years. Bob has had a long battle with lung cancer. His courageous battle was led by his strong faith and belief in God. The family asks that when you think of Bob or hear the music that reminds you of him, smile and say a prayer. The Bartlomiej family asks that if you wish to honor Bob and in lieu of flowers to consider a memorial to the following: All Saints of Alpena, Sunrise Mission, Hospice of Michigan or the Alpena Cancer Center. Karpus Hunter & Ross Funeral Home was in charge of final arrangements and future Cemetery Committal Service at Holy Cross Cemetery.
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