Obituary: Bob Lundeen
Bob Lundeen was born in Rugby, N.D., on May 9, 1925, to Selmer and Lita (Pfau) Lundeen. He passed away on Feb. 17, 2008, in Prescott, Ariz., after a valiant effort to overcome the effects of cancer.
Bob was a lifelong educator, artist, family man, World War II veteran and friend to many. He held a BA in Art Education and an MFA, both from Arizona State Teachers College (now Arizona State University), and was an ardent Sun Devil fan. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and honorably served his country in the New Hebrides, Guadalcanal, Marshall Islands (Eniwetok) and Kwajalein. Robert was a patriot; he loved his country, his God, his family and his friends.
Bob grew up in Sunnyslope, Ariz., from age 5 and belonged to a select gathering of his Depression-era school friends known as the "Loyal Order of Desert Rats" or LODR. LODR has continued to meet on a regular basis and Bob will now be an ex-officio member of this group of some of his best, lifelong friends.
Bob met his future wife, Dorothy Main, at a social event at the Desert Mission in Sunnyslope, which was a community social organization. Bob has been an active member and contributor to the Sunnyslope Historical Society, given Sunnyslope's impact on his youth and early years and his desire to see the historical significance of Sunnyslope live for future generations.
After graduation from college in 1951, Bob was the first art teacher at Sunnyslope Elementary School (Washington District) where he taught for three years before moving to Glendale Union High School in 1954 to teach art, drawing and ceramics. In 1955 Bob moved to West Phoenix High School where he taught art, design and crafts until 1965 when he moved to Glendale Community College where he taught ceramics, life drawing and art history for 22 years. Bob elected to take a partial retirement in 1987 and became the curator for the college's art collection and he also worked as a part-time lecturer and instructor until 1995 when he decided to fully retire and permanently reside in his beloved Prescott.
Bob was active in many academic and arts organizations, was a past president of the Arizona Art Educators Association and was voted the outstanding Arizona Art Educator in 1974. During his tenure at Glendale College, Bob took a six-month sabbatical leave and lived and worked in a pottery village with (a now) "National Treasure" in Japan, Tatsuzo Shimaoka, where he further developed skills and techniques, such as raku firings and salt glazes, and rich appreciation for the utility of ceramics, all of which he brought to life for his students at GCC.
During his summers off from teaching, Bob initially worked for the Boy Scouts and ran the crafts lodge at Camp Geronimo for 13 years, which enabled him to continue his pursuit of teaching arts and handicraft skills (leatherworking, woodworking and lapidary) to budding scouts. In later years, his passion switched to building cabins in Prescott, where he enjoyed his "other" love as a carpenter and craftsman. His family participated in these pursuits for the betterment of them all.
In his later years, Bob loved to have spirited discussions with his friends and family. He had a keen sense of self-deprecating humor, a sharp mind and tenacity for debate. He valued spirituality, his country, honesty, respect, being frugal and thrifty, and having a strong work ethic, and was fiercely independent and self-reliant. He believed whenever you gave a gift to someone else, that you were actually giving a gift to yourself. To this extent, he gave of himself to the benefit of many others.
Bob is loved and will missed by his former wife, Dorothy Lundeen; his son Jim Lundeen and Jim's adult daughter Tara; his daughter Nancy Brooks, her husband Glenn and their adult children Natalie and Dustin; his son Ed Lundeen, his wife Robin and their adult children Dena Arrighetti and her husband Keith, and Tania Botts and her husband Greg, and their respective children, Bob's four great-grandchildren Tyler, Spencer and Parker Arrighetti and Claire Botts (and her soon-to-be-born sister). Also, David and Irene McDonald have been exceptional extended family members who have been a significant part of Bob's life.
Commemoration services in honor of Bob will be 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, 2008, in Prescott Valley, Ariz., at Sunrise Funeral Home, 8167 E. Highway 69, with final services and burial at 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 22, 2008, in Phoenix at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona located at 23029 N. Cave Creek Road where Bob will be laid to rest with military honors.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Robert Lundeen's name and honor to either the Sunnyslope Historical Society, 737 E. Hatcher Road, Phoenix, AZ 85020, phone 602-331-3150; or St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105, phone 800-805-5856. Both are 501c3 organizations.
The family was cared for by Sunrise Funeral Home Prescott Valley, Ariz.
Information provided by survivors.