LONGVIEW — Robert (Bob) Oscar Larson, died July 6, 2019, in Longview. He was born in Astoria on March 6, 1927, was a lifelong resident of Grays River, other than his 1945-46 World War II Army service. Bob was the youngest and last survivor of the six children of Victor and Ida (Swanson) Larson.
Bob grew up working on their farm along the banks of Grays River, adjacent to the historic Grays River Covered Bridge. Bob always had a farm dog, and its name was almost always “Sport.” While still in high school, Bob was drafted into the Army and was sent to the island of Shemya in Alaskan Aleutians. After the war, Bob went back to high school and obtained his diploma. Soon he met a very pretty dark-eyed farm girl from Wheaton, Minnesota — Ila Mae Delores Jacobs, who became his wife on Aug. 8, 1948. Together they ran the dairy operation for many years, switching to raising cattle as they retired.
Bob was extremely community minded. Even though his own farm had a very ample water source, he dove head first into what started as a Grange project to obtain a community water system for the Grays River Valley. Over the next few years, he devoted countless hours and innumerable long-distance phone calls spearheading the project, which ultimately came to into being as the Western Wahkiakum Water System and was turned over to the Wahkiakum PUD.
Bob was also a very strong supporter of the local 4-H program and provided many calves to 4-H kids for fair events. Bob was a long-term member of the Grays River Grange, American Legion Post 111, and the Grays River Methodist Church. He also served on the Western Wahkiakum Telephone Company Board of Directors from 1985 through 2018.
Bob is survived by his three sons, Robert Douglas, (known as Doug), Mark and Brian. His grandchildren are Jason Larson, Brandy Larson, Donny Miller, Kelly Miller and Aaron Larson. He also had eight great-grandchildren.
On Saturday, July 13, there was a short graveside service at the Grays River Cemetery followed immediately by a memorial service at the Grays River Methodist Church, 3624 SR 4 in Grays River.
In lieu of flowers, donations are suggested to either the Grays River Cemetery in care of the Grays River Grange, P.O. Box 124 or the Grays River Methodist Church, P.O. Box 52, Grays River, WA 98621.
Dowling Funeral Home of Cathlamet is in charge of arrangements.