Funeral Services for Robert Larson, 91, of Mobridge were held on Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Mobridge.
Interment was be in Mobridge City Cemetery under the direction of Kesling Funeral Home.
Robert passed away Monday, Nov. 20, 2017, surrounded by his family at the Selby Good Samaritan Center.
Robert Theodore Larson was born April 14, 1926, on the Richard and Inga (Olson) Larson homestead eight miles northeast of Firesteel. He joined two older sisters and three older brothers. He attended country school in which his sister Bertha was his teacher. Bob and his youngest sisters, Doris (Travis) and Donna (Peterson), would ride horseback to school every day. He recalled years later that, even during the depression, his family was caring and loving with each other and always helped neighbors in need.
Bob attended high school in Mobridge, living with his aunt and uncle Martin Larson Sr., graduating in 1944. On weekends and holidays, he would ride the train to Timber Lake to work on the family farm. Due to a serious lung illness in 1940, for which he was hospitalized at the Mayo Clinic for three months, he was ineligible to serve in the armed forces.
Upon graduating high school, he returned to Firesteel and with his brother Morris started Larson Brothers Trucking. They had two-ton trucks hauling grain, livestock and coal. Their trucks had no hoists so unloading was by hand. Also during this period, he started acquiring cattle and worked with his father on the farm.
On May 22, 1948, he was married to Audrey Elder from Timber Lake, who he met at a dance. They loved and continued dancing until Audrey’s death in 2004. In 1949, they moved to the Larson family farm and took over the day-to-day operations.
Due to drought, hail, grasshoppers, blizzards, and prairie fires, it was a tough going. In 1956, Robert entered into a partnership with Pat and Ruby Maher, in which Maher’s ran theirs and Robert’s livestock and had a joint farming operation. This relationship endured until Pat and Ruby’s sons, Bruce and Jim Maher, took over the management. The Maher’s still lease and farm Bob’s land.
Robert and Audrey moved to Mobridge in 1956. Robert started Bob’s Friendly Service at the corner of Main and Grand Crossing (Gas and Goodies now). Bob’s was open 24 hours a day and included Mobil products, Harley Davidson Motorcycles, 24-hour cab service, United Trailer Rental and used cars. During this time Robert also sold cars for Travis’s Ford dealership.
From the early 1960s, Bob was in real estate sales and appraisals ending in 2010 with Key Real Estate. Bob was active in Trinity Lutheran Church, singing in the choir for many years. He was a member of the Mobridge Regional Hospital Board, Mobridge Rotary Club, Moose Club and the South Dakota Realtor’s Association.
Robert is survived by his three children, Ted (Norlene) of Hamilton, Mont., Debora (Marty) Neal of Gillette, Wyo., and Steven of Sioux Falls; three grandchildren, Jennifer and Pete Dunn, Kari, and Marty Bob Neal; three great-grandchildren, Abby, Owen and Sam Dunn; and two sisters, Doris Travis and Donna Peterson.
Robert was preceded in death by his wife, Audrey; two sisters, Ruth Johnson and Bertha Johnson; and three brothers, Lester, Lloyd and Morris.
The family requested no flowers. Memorials may be given to the charity of the donor’s choice.