The Luehrman family endured the news of the tragic deaths of Helen and Bob Brotemarkle over the past weekend in a car accident in Arizona. These were two of my very favorite people. I was utterly flattened and heart broken by this news…as were so many others who knew them both. Here they are twelve years ago celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary.
Helen, my dear godmother, was my dad’s multi talented younger sister who found her way into the musical world as a young woman. An accomplished and gifted musician, she was the pianist/organist for many organizations, particularly area churches ranging from Kansas City to the retirement community in Surprise, Arizona where she and Bob made their home in recent years.
Bob, retired from Southwestern Bell, was the life of any group he happened to come upon! He happily supported his friends and family alike with his generosity of spirit and tireless energy. He and Dave’s Uncle Bob became buddies and were known as “The Bobs” after meeting in Saint Louis for our anniversary celebration. Kindred spirits!
I’m so glad that Kate, Coulter and I saw them both last summer at the Luehrman family reunion in Lexington, Missouri. They brought all their synergy to the gathering! Here is Helen sitting with her nieces – left to right – me, Peggy, Helen and Janice.
Together Bob and Helen made for an indescribable team. In retirement, they traveled around the country exploring and supporting all family adventures. Helen was a steadfast reader of this blog and commented often but also sent me additional notes describing her years on the Luehrman family farm – conveying details that she knew would spark my interest. She would often end her correspondence saying “bless you”.
None of us can imagine what life will be like without them, let alone their sons David and John and their families. My only saving grace is that the knowledge that as dearest partners in life, they left us as a unit, together forever…Helen and Bob…or Bob and Helen. Our love and peace to you both…Bless you!