Robert Warren Carrick, or Bob as most knew him, was born 12 March 1920 in Salt Lake City, Utah. After a very brief illness he passed away on 12 November 2014. He is survived by his wife of forty plus years; Martha, his sister Betty Nichols, sister-in-laws Marie Carrick and Dorothy Carrick, daughters; Betty Pasteur (Pierre), Becky Lowe, Nancy Gaskill (Gary), son Robert William Carrick (Debbi) and all residents of Ely, Nevada. Not to mention six grandchildren: Eric, Christina, Robert, Lillian, Martha and James and five great-grandchildren: Anna Rebecca, William, Abigail, Liam and his latest namesa ke Robert Westin Carrick. Brothers Marvin and Donald, brother-in-law Jim Nichols and son-in-law Dale Lowe preceded Bob in death. Robert originally married Gertrude Ann Freeman in 1941 and they resided together in Houston, Texas with their four children until her death from cancer in 1964.
Like many of what has become known as the “Greatest Generation” Robert was born into the hardscrabble times of the great depression. Bob and his family followed their husband/father from Salt Lake City, Utah to the then booming mining town of Ely, Nevada. Despite his father’s employment with the Nevada Northern Railroad, like most Americans’ during this period, times were hard for the Carrick family. Yet Bob, his older brother Marvin, his sister Betty and youngest brother, Donald, all thrived. Growing up Bob was active in the Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints, the Boy Scouts of America and later worked various odd jobs before becoming an apprentice fireman on the Nevada Northern Railroad.
When war broke out, Bob enlisted in the Army Air Corps and was trained as a glider pilot. Bob and Gertrude bounced from training base to training base crisscrossing the country before he was finally deployed overseas to the Pacific Theater, specifically New Guinea. As a flight officer Bob flew missions in not only gliders but in C-47’s and small observation planes as well. Stories told have him even volunteering as a gunner on a B-17.
Upon his return from the Pacific and after the war’s end, like thousands of other GI’s, he took advantage of the GI Bill and he attended the University of Nevada receiving his BA degree in Psychology and then the University of California, Berkley where he received his Masters of Arts in Sociology. With many GI’s looking for work jobs were scarce and Bob finally moved his wife and the first of four children, Betty and Robert, to Houston, Texas. Bob was initially employed by the Family Service Bureau, later the Harris County Probation Department and still later the Houston Center for Blind Children. During the late 1960’s Bob was the lead administrator of one of the first halfway houses for narcotic addicts, Southmore House. By this time the family had grown by two with the addition of daughters Becky and Nancy. The little cracker box house at 1823 Hewitt Drive had grown a two-car garage, a new kitchen, three new bedrooms and an additional bathroom; Bob did much of the work. During this same period Bob served in the Air Force Reserve at Ellington, AFB outside of Houston attaining the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During the Cuba missile crisis Bob’s command was one of the few Texas AF Reserve units called to active duty.
While the family and Bob’s career prospered, it was not all positive and tragedy struck in 1964 when his wife Gertrude succumbed to cancer after a lengthy battle.
In 1967 Bob took a commission in the Public Health Service and soon after he was promoted to the rank of Captain/O-6. This career change also saw the family make a move to Potomac, Maryland. By this time son Robert was a college student, Betty had graduated college and was married and she was to be followed soon afterward by Becky. Nancy was the last child left at home. In 1972 Bob’s life took a couple of major course changes. Following their Washington, D.C. courtship, Bob married Martha Thompson and they moved with Nancy to Atlanta, Georgia, which was to be home until his death this November. That same year son Robert had joined the Marine Corps and was married and Nancy entered college and was married in 1978.
Bob always led by example. The importance he placed on education was fully embraced by his children. All have their college degrees. One has a master’s degree and another has two masters’ degrees. Of his grandchildren all six have their college degrees and additionally, one is an MD, and two have their masters. Bob’s lifetime of service on behalf of others was also to be emulated. His children include a lifetime swim instructor, a Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel and retired high school principal, and two teachers. Among his grandchildren you will find an MD, a teacher and a fireman/EMT. Not to mention they are all productive and contributing members of their communities.
If there was ever a measure of a man, Bob was an impressive yardstick. Bob Carrick was the patriarch of our extended family and he was a “good” man. All will sorely miss Bob Carrick.
If you would like to make a memorial donation in Bob’s memory, please consider:
The University of Nevada, Reno
“UNR Foundation/Unrestricted Excellence, Memo: “In memory of Robert Warren Carrick” MS 0162 – 1664 N Virginia Street, Reno NV 89557
Online donations: http://giving.unr.edu/
(Designation: Unrestricted Excellence, Comments: ‘In memory of Robert Warren Carrick’) Or The Parks Springs Foundation