In Memoriam: Robert (Bob) Bohannan

Arizona Trail - In Memoriam

Bohannan, Robert C. “Bob” Jr.

Age 95, of Scottsdale and Flagstaff, AZ, passed away peacefully on January 30 after a brief illness. A man of deep patriotism and conservative political principles, Bob Bohannan had a proud record of business achievements and public service. He was president of Arizona Mortgage and Investment Company during its 32 years of operation beginning in 1957. Bob Bohannan was born January 21, 1919, in Columbus, Ohio. He graduated from Ohio State in 1941 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration and a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps. He was ordered to active duty at Luke Field the day after his graduation and was later assigned to Yuma Army Air Field for the remainder of the war. After the War, Bob remained in Arizona and entered the grocery business in Phoenix, helping establish two “Roger Wilco” markets on Seventh Avenue. He subsequently helped organize Associated Grocers, Inc., to give small independent grocers greater purchasing power, and served as its president and a director for several years. In 1949, he became controller and assistant to the president of KPHO, helping to establish Phoenix’s first television station. Next Bob entered the finance industry. During his career he served as

president and director, Arizona Mortgage & Investment Company; treasurer and director, National Life and Casualty Insurance Company; and vice-chairman and director, Southwest Savings and Loan Association. Bob Bohannan entered politics, and was one of six Republicans elected to the Arizona House of Representatives in 1948. He was appointed State Welfare Commissioner by Governor Howard Pyle in 1951 and served for two years. In 1959 through 1962, he served on the State Retirement System Board. On three occasions, 1952, 1953, and 1962, he was appointed to the State Welfare Board. Long active in Arizona civic life, Bob, served terms as President of the Arizona Society, Sons of the American Revolution, and Governor of the Arizona Mayflower Society. He was a member of the board of directors of the Theodore Roosevelt Council, Boy Scouts of America, and the Verde Vaqueros, of which he was a charter member. He was active in the Phoenix Downtown Lions Club, the Flagstaff Lions Club, and the Maricopa County Mounted Sheriff’s Posse. He served terms as vice president and director of the Phoenix Community Council, and director of the Salvation Army. He served as treasurer, director, and a trustee of Phoenix Little Theatre, a director of Phoenix Musical Theatre and a past-president and director of the Arizona Club. He had joined Phi Kappa Psi at Ohio State and was active in the fraternity’s alumni association. From his youth in Ohio until shortly before his death, Bob was an avid horseman. He was a charter member of the Verde Vaqueros and the only member to make the ride 50 years. He served a term as President of the Arizona State Horsemen’s Association and helped re-start the organization after World War II and establish a series of monthly trail rides in Maricopa County parks. Bob was a past President, Treasurer, and board member of the North American Trail Ride Conference. He was instrumental in introducing the sport of competitive trail riding to Arizona, and managed the first and many subsequent trail rides in Arizona to be sanctioned by the NATRC. He was a past president and director of the Roosevelt Rough Riders, and treasurer and board member of the Arizona Horselovers Foundation. He was a past-president of the Palomino Horse Association of Arizona, and a former member of the Western Saddle Club, the Northern Arizona Horsemen’s Association, the Arizona Horse Lovers’ Club, the Arabian [Horse] Association of Arizona, and the Arizona Saddlebred Association. Bob discovered fox hunting, also, and, with his wife, Margaret, founded the Paradise Valley Beagles. He was a charter member of the High Country Hounds in Flagstaff, and a member of the Grass Ridge Hounds in Sonoita, where he and Margaret met. Bob Bohannan is preceded in death by his parents, Robert C. Bohannan, Sr., and Elizabeth (Fearn), and his first Wife, Katharine (Hughes). He is survived by his devoted wife, Margaret (Griffith), his brother, William F. (Mary Jeanne), his daughter, Elizabeth “Lisa” Bohannan-Hutchison, his son, Robert H. “Rob”, his grand-children, William S. Hutchison, Jr. (Cynthia), James Robert Hutchison, and Katharine Hutchison Springfield (Stephen), and five great-grand-children, Libby, Jack, Hope, and Trey, Hutchison, and . C. J. Springfield, his nephew, William F. Bohannan, Jr., niece, Christine S. Bohannan, and grand-nephew, Walker J. Bohannan. Funeral services will be held Thursday, February 6, at 10:00 am at St. Barnabas on the Desert, 6715 North Mockingbird Lane, Scottsdale, followed by interment at Paradise Memorial Gardens, 9300 E Shea Blvd, Scottsdale. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bob’s name to The Arizona Trail Association, P. O. Box 36736, Phoenix, AZ 85067-6736 or the Phoenix Downtown Lions Club Foundation, 7216 North 3rd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85020-4905.

Published in The Arizona Republic from Feb. 4 to Feb. 5, 2014