Robert “Bob” Syse, age 91, of Stacy passed away October 13, 2023. A funeral service will be held at 11:00 A.M. Friday, October 20th at Strike Life Tributes in CAMBRIDGE with a visitation one hour prior. Interment will be in Spring Lake Lutheran Cemetery in North Branch with Military Honors.
Robert Syse, known as Bob, entered the heavens on October 13, 2023 at the age of 91. Bob was born January 7, 1932 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His parents were Norman Pedar Syse, whose parents emigrated from Norway, and Helen (Douglas) Syse, whose ancestors were Northern European immigrants, too. The youngest of four children, Bob grew up in Minneapolis, MN, where his dad ran a barber shop. His father remarried, and when Bob was nine years old, the family moved to a farm in Cambridge, MN. Bob attended a little country school there, but he never really liked it. At age 15, he quit school and left for North Dakota to work with a friend. They weren’t making enough money to survive on, so they decided to join the service. At 17, Bob joined the U.S. Navy, serving our country on the USS Greenwich Bay during the Korean War. The Navy sent him to baking school and he was proud to be the ship’s baker. Always a strong advocate of veteran’s organizations, Bob was actively involved in the American Legion and the VFW, participating in the color guard for many years. At age 42, Bob became a lifelong participant and advocate for Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), serving in many ways. He touched many lives through AA.
Bob lived in Cambridge and North Branch, MN, most of his life. He worked a variety of jobs and owned local businesses, starting with the North Star gas station on Old Main Street in Cambridge. In a lifetime of working on vehicles, Bob did anything that involved auto maintenance, including selling and repairing tires, being a mechanic, selling parts, and owning a towing business. Then he purchased a farm in Rush City, MN. He always loved farming. It was there he began his hobby of collecting John Deere tractors for 30 years, right up to his final auction September 4, 2023. In his retirement years, he learned how to fix up houses. He and his partner, Ruby, really enjoyed carpentry work, and it became their favorite pastime. Bob also enjoyed collecting lawn mowers, belt buckles, chauffeur badges, and other antique items, using Internet marketplaces to buy and sell them. He participated in local flea markets for many years. His favorite venue was the Almelund, MN, Threshing Show.
Bob is survived by his partner, Ruby Flowers; his six children with his first wife, Miriam (Olson): Nancy Syse, Robert Syse, Susanne Redfield (Whitey/Scott), Michael Syse (Hannah), Roxanne Ricci (Michael), and Neal Syse (Theresa); his two children with his second wife, Sharon (Charles): Nicole Kveton (Terry) and Frank Syse (Lia); sixteen grandchildren: Steven, James, Zachariah, Lillie, Joseph, Angelo, Kara, Melissa, Peter, Sarah, Jesse, Angeleena, Katie, Jacob, Sam, and Korra; and thirteen great-grandchildren: Owen, Micah, Sophia, Preston, Naavah, Hans, Lucille, Elliana, Donello, Isaiah, Aniya, Ephraim, and Callum.
Bob is preceded in death by his father, Norman Syse; mother, Helen (Douglas) Syse; stepmother, Mary Syse; sister, Mary (Syse) Chulik; brother, Norman Syse; sister, Patricia (Syse) Rutt; former wife, Miriam (Olson) Sparre; and great-grandson, Bo Redfield.