Robert J. Boehs
March 29, 1930 - November 21, 2021
Our father and grandfather, Robert “Bob” Boehs was born to John and Mary Wedel Boehs in rural Major County, Oklahoma on March 29, 1930. He was the eleventh of twelve siblings. He peacefully passed away at home Sunday morning, November 21, 2021.
Dad’s childhood was spent on a farm in the blackjacks southwest of Ringwood, Oklahoma helping grow watermelons and other farm products during the great depression of the 1930’s. He received his formal education at the New Forest Home School west of Ringwood. He, together with his family, attended the Fairview Mennonite Church east of Fairview. In his youth he had a new birth experience and upon the confession of his faith, he was baptized March 1, 1944, thus becoming a member of the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite. His family and many others were influenced by the testimony of his life and steadfast faith.
In 1951 Dad was one of four young brethren who were involved in a pilot program for the young men of the church at Roseburg, Oregon. This was for several months, and they worked as aids in a VA Hospital in lieu of military service. On April 13, 1952, Dad married our mother, Joanne Koehn, at Goltry, Oklahoma. They shared life’s joys and sorrows for nearly 68 years. To this union five children were born. They lived in the Ringwood Blackjacks for a short time before going to Roseburg where Dad resumed serving at the VA Hospital. By this time, the earlier program had evolved into a church program with government approval. These two years of service resulted in many close friendships. Dad often recounted his experiences of this time. Their first child was born while they were there. Upon their return to Oklahoma, they moved to Goltry, eventually settling on 40 acres southwest of town. Dad took employment from John H. Schmidt and later as a carpenter under Andy Koehn. He enjoyed this work, and it provided means to support the family. He was widely known in the community for his building skills. His service attitude affected customers and neighbors alike. Dad loved fishing and often said, “a bad day fishing is better than a good day at work.” In 1986 our parents accepted the opportunity to serve as house parents at Hogan Hozhni at Window Rock, Arizona. The time spent there ministering to the needs of the homeless Navajo children was a highlight in their lives. Dad and Mom became Papa Bob and Mamma Jo to a large number of girls who cared for the children. These relationships that were forged were precious and long lasting. When they returned to Goltry, he resumed his carpentry. Dad loved singing. He inspired us to sing, especially by memory. We often sang a prayer song for table grace.
Mom’s passing in March of 2020 left a void in Dad’s life, and shortly his health began to decline. He patiently endured his aches, pains, and affliction without complaining. We appreciate the care he received at Fairview Fellowship Home. He was able to spend his last three months at home because of the love and care given by Tammie, Corina, and Tori. Dad has left us with an assurance of salvation and has once again has led the way this time into eternal life.
He is survived by his children, Debbie and Harold Smith of Montezuma, Kansas, Donna and the late Don Toews of Del Norte, Colorado, Doug and Geneva Boehs of Helena, Oklahoma, John and Char Boehs of Grant, Nebraska, and Gwen and Bruce Schmidt of Helena, Oklahoma; one sister, Willamae Boehs of Fairview, Oklahoma; twenty-one grandchildren; fifty-two great-grandchildren; six brothers-in-law, and four sisters-in-law.
Funeral service for Bob will be Wednesday, November 24, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. at Pleasant View Mennonite Church in Goltry. Memory service will be Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. at the church. Burial will follow the funeral service at Karoma Cemetery outside of Goltry with arrangements by Lanman Funeral Home, Inc. of Helena. www.lanmanmemorials.com Facebook: Lanman Funeral Home Inc.