Robert Childs

Robert Childs

January 21, 1931 - May 13, 2019

Monday May 13, 2019, Robert Felix Childs passed from this world to the next after months of struggling with infections. He was born January 21, 1931, the 3rd of 7 sons to James Bennett Childs and Eleanor Atilla (Pirkner) Childs. Bob, as his friends called him; Felix as his parents and brothers called him, grew up in Washington, D.C., graduated from the University of Maryland as a mechanical engineer and after 9 years in ROTC joined the U.S. Air Force out of college. After his stint in the service he was discharged a first Lt. He spent 30 yrs. at Ford Motor Co. as an Automotive Engineer followed by another decade as a subcontract engineer. He was of the last generation to move from system to system until he thoroughly understood the engineering of the entire vehicle. He met Patricia Ann Allwine at her Grandmother’s summer place in Ocean City, MD while he was home on leave from the Air Force. They tumbled into love quickly. Pat followed Bob to suburban Detroit when he assumed his position at Ford. They married in 1955 and raised 7 children. Bob & Pat moved, with their two youngest, to Placentia, CA in 1984 when Bob took a position with Impco as lead engineer in charge of Product and Development. They moved back to MI in 1990 with Bob rejoining long-time associates at Modern Engineering while the two youngest sons finished school in West Bloomfield, MI. In 1998 Bob & Pat moved to Honolulu, HI to care for Pat’s ailing parents. Once they were unencumbered by children or parents to care for, they chose to move to Port Charlotte, FL to live out their lives in the sun and warmth they longed for all the years they tolerated the Michigan climate. A son of a Government Documents Librarian at the Library of Congress, Bob was a lifelong student. He walked the talk when he instilled in his children an insatiable curiosity for new learning and new pursuits. Bob was what some would call a professional amateur photographer. As a hobbyist, he always had very high quality camera equipment at his disposal. He left his family tens of thousands of slides and photos. He was a self-taught tailor, making his own suits as a young adult and in later years making pattern shirts for anyone who asked. Patterns always lined up across seams and they fell across shoulders as if tailored by a pro. He was a competent chef, knew his way around most tools and relished his next road trip; traveling tens of thousands of miles for work and pleasure over his 88 fulfilling years. He was an avid reader, loved cross word puzzles, a past time he learned from his mother, a children’s librarian and played Scrabble with anyone who would share a board with him. Bob will be cremated. The family will schedule two Celebration of Life events this summer. Safe travels Pop! Enjoy the road on the other side.

Leave a message

250 words left

Your message will be reviewed and approved before being made public.

Lisa Rigato

Bob was one of a kind! I remember the first time I met him in person he gave me a huge hug and lifted me right off the ground. He made a big impact in my life and was a great example of being a life-long learner. He will be missed deeply and I’m so grateful to have known him.

Marcy Soufrine

What a beautiful obituary for such an incredible man. I am so sorry for your loss. I loved your dad. He was warm, kind, gentle, loving and had the spirit of a young person. I didn’t have much time to get to know him but I feel blessed for the moments we did get to spend together. He will be so greatly missed.

Tony and Heidi Norris

To the child’s family. We love you and truly sorry for your loss.

Kerri McKelvey

Wishing your family peace to deal with the rough road you are facing. Words cannot express the sorrow in my heart. Know that I am here if there is anything I can do.

Francine (Fran) Sister-In-law

I was lucky and blessed to in my early years, to have, shall l say, ,an 'almost-or Brother" to look up to. Loved being included like a part of the family. Hiking the 5 mile circle trail above Pearl Harbor . Hanging on on while he raced around " Round Top" (close to Punchbowl). Going to the swap meet and more. I wish that l could have fit in better, my heart is heavy and l can see and feel you nearby, from time to time! Dear Sister, l feel for you, l can. See Flick (as l/we called him) coming through the front door when l was a little girl, and saying wow, he is so fine, so special, and so great to have him around. Yes, l adored him and loved seeing you two as a forever couple! I hope for the best..... and the goodness of God.....


Forgot your password?

Enter your email address below and we'll send you a link to reset your password.