Robert Gelder was born in Centralia, WA on April 8, 1953. He left life as we know it surrounded by his loving family. He died unexpectedly on May 16, 2021, due to a fall.
Also known as Bob and Bobby to friends and family, he relished life on earth and was hoping to stay much longer. His abilities, skills, and talents were endless. He could do anything he put his mind to and nothing was beyond his reach. His passions were construction, car repair, gardening, singing, beer and wine making, along with many other activities. If he didn't know how to do something he would find a way. His greatest joy in life was using his skills and abilities to help others. He sang in the church choir and with Salem SenateAires for many years. He built a successful business in auto upholstery and in retirement enjoyed many cross-country road trips (by motorcycle and travel trailer), driving a tour bus, and volunteering for Meals on Wheels. He loved his many friends and family and was extremely proud of his children and grandchildren. Bob is described by all who knew him as dependable, kind, committed and honorable.
He is survived by his wife, Joan; son, Nathan (Mindy) Gelder, of Port Angeles, WA; daughter, Trisha (Manuel) Morales, Salem, OR; grandchildren, Raven Gelder, Reef Gelder, Dahlia Morales and Sky Gelder; siblings: Elaine (James) Jenkins, Billings, MO; Jean (Leroy) Shepherd, Cloverdale, OR; Joan (Craig) Ruthford, Chehalis, WA; James (Minna) Gelder, Salem, OR; several nephews and nieces; and parents-in-law, Floyd & Nadine Lauber, Silverton, OR. He was preceded in death by his parents, Carl & Marilyn Gelder.
A celebration of Bob's life is planned for a later date. Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service is assisting his family. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Marion-Polk County food share, the Meals on Wheels division.
Guest Book Entries
Rest In Peace Bob. You will be missed!
Sending love and blessing to Bob's family he will be missed such a kind,generous man
My prayers are with you all. Wish I was there to give you a hug