A Celebration of Life Mass for Robert (Bob) O'Leary of Emmetsburg will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 23, at Holy Family Parish in Emmetsburg. Father Bill Schreiber will officiate. Inurnment will be at a later date in St. John's Cemetery, Emmetsburg. The Joyce Funeral Home in Emmetsburg is in charge of arrangements. The family will greet friends Friday, Feb. 22, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Joyce Funeral Home. A prayer service will be held at 7 p.m
Robert Donald O'Leary, son of Peter and Emma (Fredrick) O'Leary, was born July 10, 1934, in Emmetsburg. He was raised on the farm five miles northeast of Emmetsburg. Bob worked in Chicago for a short time after school, then returned to Emmetsburg.
On Aug. 19, 1952, Bob was united in marriage to Bonnie Knudson at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Emmetsburg. They farmed for five years, then moved to town and built a new home. They grew out of their home, and moved to a six-bedroom home and raised four boys. Bob was self employed at the DX Station in Emmetsburg for three years, and then accepted a job as a mechanic for the Iowa DOT where he worked for 32 years. After retirement, he hauled fertilizer for Thermogas, helped farmers, and rebuilt motors.
Bob thoroughly enjoyed camping, gardening, fishing, playing cards, working on many projects in his garage, and spending time with family and friends. In 1964, he became a pilot. Bob was a volunteer fireman for Emmetsburg for many years. Bob is the last of the original group that started the Emmetsburg St. Patrick's Celebration.
Bob O'Leary passed away Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019, at Palo Alto County Hospital in Emmetsburg. He was 84.
Left to cherish his memory are two sons, Robert Jr. (Yvonne) of Sibley, and Daniel (Gloria) of Emmetsburg; grandchildren Janell, Daniel, Jay, Wendy, Ken, Pete, Crystal, Mike, and Jennifer; and 15 great grandchildren.
Mr. O'Leary was preceded in death by Bonnie, his wife and love of his life for 66 years; two sons, Peter and Kenneth O'Leary; his parents; two brothers, Bill and Tim O'Leary; three sisters, Corneal Joyce, Patricia Korleski, and Dorothy Forrester; and great granddaughter Hayley Ann.
"I had my very first plane ride with Bob...I believe my brother Joe and I with my Dad and of course Bob...Bob asked if we wanted a roller coaster ride...Joe said yes, before I could say no...glad it ended well but I was afraid I was going to throw up in the plane...It was always a great time using Bob's black truck to haul leaves or clean out the attic and take it to the dump...Dad always let us ride in the back of the truck...Bob was a great guy, I remember him as always having a kind word...My sympathies to all of you..
Therese Frederick Schany"
"Condolences to all of Bob's family. He will be remembered and missed by many. With our love and sympathy, Judy & Dave Nixon"
"I am so sorry to hear of Bob's passing. May the knowledge he has been reunited with family menbers, especially his wife, bring you comfort. "
"So sorry to hear of your loss."
"The O'Leary family,
May you be comforted by loving memories. My thoughts are with all of you.