Robert Charles “Bob” Nabozny was born February 4, 1928 in Gates, Pennsylvania, to Katie Stanoch and John Nabozny, the second of their four sons. A 65 year resident of Sapulpa, he died January 20, 2021 of injuries incurred during a fall.
Bob and his wife Mae started their married life in Cleveland, Ohio, where Bob worked for several automobile repair shops, rising to the level of service manager while still in his mid-20s. They moved to Tulsa in 1956, where they ran a Tastee Freez on 11th Street, but decided within months that Sapulpa was meant to be home.
Bob was well known in Sapulpa, having opened and run the first Tastee Freez in town. Many folks who were kids in the late 50s and early 60s still remember their favorite order, and how much they liked Bob, who would sometimes slip them a special treat, or offer them a burger if they forgot their lunch money. After selling the Tastee Freez (which has since become the popular Happy Burger,) Bob worked for Midwest Chevrolet as body shop manager and service manager. He later worked for Property Damage Appraisers as an insurance adjuster, a job he loved for the travel it required, until he took a leave of absence to manage his investment properties. That “temporary” leave of absence lasted about 30 years, until he quit working to care for his wife.
Bob loved hunting, fishing, gardening – anything in the outdoors. Hunting was his passion, and he loved being out in the woods, even if the deer and turkeys were not cooperative. He delighted in his family, and would always beam with delight when he told of having received a visit or phone call from one of his kids or grandkids. He was a devoted husband to wife Mae for the 72 years of their marriage, until her passing in 2019. When she was in care for over two years for advanced Parkinson's Disease, he visited her daily. The staff at the facility still speak of him with affection and admiration.
He was active in his church and community, a member of the Sapulpa Jaycees as a young business owner, and served on the City Council in the 1970s. He also volunteered for Meals on Wheels, the Salvation Army, and Community Care, now called Caring Community Friends. He was also very proud of his service in the Army Air Corps as a young man.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Joe, and his wife Mae Lavon Hausner. He is survived by his brothers Ed (and wife Carole) and Bill, both of Ohio, and three children: Jane Johnson (and husband Stan) of Sapulpa, Linda Sonder (and husband Carl) of Phoenix, and son David (and wife Jan), also of Sapulpa. In addition, he is survived by three grandchildren: DaLynn Gaspard (and husband Scott) of Sand Springs, Sondra Wolff (better known as Sunni, and husband Travis), of Tulsa, and Johnathon Nabozny (and wife Cherie) of Jenks. And finally, there are four great-grandchildren: Lauren Lazo, Asher Wolff, and Liv and Quinn Nabozny, and numerous nieces and nephews.
A Rosary and family visitation will be held at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 26, at Smith Funeral Home in Sapulpa. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Sapulpa at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, January 27, with burial to follow at South Heights Cemetery.
The family would like to extend its sincere thanks and appreciation to the wonderful staff at St Francis Hospital in Tulsa. In both the emergency room and the Intensive Care Unit, the quality of care Bob received was unsurpassed.
Bob was a loving father and husband, and a good, kind, and generous man. He was a devout Catholic his entire life. One of the people who worked for Bob at the Tastee Freez has said, “Bob Nabozny was the finest man I ever met.” What a fitting tribute to a good man.
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