LONGWOOD, FL - J.R. “Bob” Graw, age 84, of Longwood, Fla. formerly of Asheville, passed away Tuesday, September 10, 2019.
Bob was born in Asheville on June 24, 1935. He lived from Miami, Fla. to Harlan, KY, but spent as much time as possible in his beloved North Carolina Mountains, moving back here in 1996. Bob graduated from Edgewater High School in Orlando, Fla. in 1953 and Florida Southern College in Lakeland, Fla. in 1957. While at Florida Southern, Bob met and ultimately married his wife, Lois Jean Sickels on June 6, 1959. They were married for forty-three years.
After living a year and a half in Gainesville, Fla., Bob and Lois lived and worked for thirty years in Ocala, Fla., where they raised their family. Bob was active in the Ocala Power Squadron, Ocala Lions Club, and founding director of the Fort King Lions Club, Ocala Jaycees where he won numerous awards and Silver Springs Rotary Club where he again won several achievement awards. He devoted a tremendous amount of time and energy to the Ocala Elks Lodge, serving on many committees as member or chairman and serving as Exalted Ruler. He was also appointed by the Governor to both the Southwest Florida Water Management District and the St. John’s Water Management District and served each as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors.
For ten years Bob was a nationally recognized insurance adjuster and investigator. He then worked for a local savings and loan institution for thirteen years, rising to the position of Executive Vice President and Secretary. He next instituted a state chartered savings and loan as founding President, CEO and Director in which position he remained for ten years before accepting the position of Vice Chairman for Republic National Bank of New York and expanding their national mortgage banking operation.
In 2008 he married Diane Brown; they were married for 11 years. Bob and Diane moved to Florida in 2015 as Bob’s health declined.
Surviving are his wife, Diane Graw; step-daughter, Kimberly Brown; sons, Ralph Graw and David Graw and wife Tammy; grandchildren, Mitchell, Nicholas and Stasha and great granddaughter, Victoria.
His graveside service was held at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, September 18, 2019 in West Memorial Park. Reverend Skip Gillikin officiated.
For those who desire, condolences may be offered to the family under Mr. Graw’s obituary at www.WestFamilyFuneralServices.com.