Robert Berry, 86 of Muscatine, passed away on Friday, January 3, 2020, at Lutheran Homes. Funeral services will be 10:30 AM Wednesday, January 8, 2020, at Wesley United Methodist Church. Following the service, a time of food and fellowship will be held in the church fellowship hall. Burial will follow the luncheon at 2:30 p.m. at Illinois City Cemetery. Visitation will be from 4:00 PM until 7:00 PM on Tuesday, January 7, 2020, at Snyder & Hollenbaugh Funeral & Cremation Services of Muscatine, formerly The Geo. M. Wittich-Lewis Funeral Home. A memorial has been established in Bob’s name. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.sandhfuneralservice.com
Bob was born in Muscatine County on July 10th, 1933. He was the son of Clarence H. & Vivian J. (McCleary), Berry.
Bob was a graduate of Muscatine High School with the Class of 1951 where he served as a class officer for 3 years. He was very active in athletics serving as captain of the football and basketball teams. “Chubber”, as he was known by many classmates, earned 11 varsity letters in baseball, basketball, football, and track.
After high school, Bob attended and played basketball at Muscatine Junior College for two years, where he met his future wife, Helen. In 1955, Bob graduated from Iowa Wesleyan College with his BA Degree in Secondary Education.
In June of 1955, he married Helen L. Powell – in 2019 they celebrated their 64th anniversary.
After college, Bob taught school and coached wrestling and football in the Davenport public schools before being drafted into the United States Army in 1956. He spent most of his military time stationed in Straubing, Germany, serving as a communication specialist with the 11th Armored Cavalry. Helen joined Bob in Germany and taught 1st grade on base. Together they traveled extensively throughout Europe.
After returning from the military in 1958, he was employed by Investor Diversified Services in Rock Island, Illinois where he resided until being transferred to Muscatine in 1963. In 1966 he purchased a 50% interest in Millar & Martin Insurance Agency and continued to operate the agency. He later changed the name to Martin & Berry Insurance Agency and became the sole owner in 1979. He continued the operation until retirement in 2000.
While in Muscatine he was active in the Little League program, serving on the board of directors and umpiring. He was an original member of the Muskie booster club and served as past president of Independent Insurance Agents. He was a member of the Geneva Country Club and served on the advisory committee of the Municipal Golf Course.
Bob enjoyed following his children and grandchildren in all their activities throughout the years. He loved his morning coffee group and spending Winters golfing in Arizona or Florida. He passed a lot of time reading Janet Evanovich books, listening to country music and sitting on the back porch watching his Cardinals. Bob also enjoyed yard work but loved nothing more than spending time with his family, especially around Christmas.
He is survived by his wife, Helen Berry and two children; Cory A. Berry & wife Linda, Wendy M. Lizama and husband Peter. He was blessed with 3 grandchildren; Hunter N. Berry, Taylor R. Berry, Trace Robert Ball & wife Angie. Two great-grandchildren, Camdyn & Wyatt Ball, with a third arriving in May. Three sisters, Betty L. McMahon & husband Robert “Bud”, Wanda McCullough, Bertie D. Wade & husband Jim.
Preceding him in death were his parents, brothers-in-law Wayne McCullough and Vaughn S. Powell, sister-in-law Sandra (Powell) Spray and long-time friend and “buddy” Daryl Houseal.
The family would like to say a special thank you to the staff and his new friends from Lutheran Living for helping to take care of our Bob for the last few years.