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In Memoriam: Robert Harold Quick

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The TAPPI community is saddened to learn of the passing of long-time member Robert Harold Quick, the only child of Harold and Alberta Quick, who was born Sept. 23, 1925 in Chehalis, Wash., USA. Bob grew up in Chehalis, where his father was the Lewis County Auditor and Treasurer. He had a happy and adventurous childhood, trapping squirrels for pets and making his own root beer. He was active in Boy Scouts; played football, tennis, and clarinet; and graduated from Chehalis High School as ASB President.

Quick spent his first two years of college at Centralia Community College and Oregon State University before serving briefly in the U.S. Army during World War II and then transferring to the University of Washington, from which he received his bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering. It was at a UW Sigma Nu-Sigma Kappa mixer in Seattle where he met the "100% Norwegian" co-ed Norma Stave from Silvana, a small town north of Everett. They married upon Norma's graduation from UW in 1950 and moved east so that Bob could attend graduate school, first at MIT and then at the Institute of Paper Chemistry in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Robert earned a PhD in Paper Chemistry in 1955 and the family moved back to Washington that year when he accepted a job at Weyerhaeuser. He was first based in Longview and, starting in 1968, at headquarters in Tacoma and Federal Way. Bob's work was largely in research and development on corrugated containers and for several years he chaired divisions for TAPPI.

Robert and Norma built a home on Lake Tapps and lived there together until his death. Their three children graduated from Sumner High School and the University of Washington. He worked at Weyerhaeuser for 55 years; whether home or away never missed a Rotary meeting up until the week of his death; and was a faithful member of Sumner Presbyterian and, later, Grace Community Church in Auburn and Edgewood Bible Church. Bob's faith was genuine and integral to his life; he was never afraid to share Jesus.

He also particularly loved skiing, hiking, and mountain climbing when he was younger, in fact proposing to his wife while they were climbing Mt. St. Helens. He liked the Boston Pops and old Broadway musicals, often making reference to their lyrics in contexts which were not always immediately obvious to everyone else. Bob also was a bit romantic, every year buying Norma a bouquet of roses for Mother's Day with the number of members in their family matching the number of blooms and watching together with her (many times) films like An Affair to Remember.

He enjoyed hunting for rocks, gems, and bargains of any sort and was a staunch Republican and Husky football "loyal rooter." He and Norma traveled far and wide, from remote Alaska and Australia to urban Asia and Europe. He especially liked visiting the properties they owned in North Carolina, Chehalis, on the Washington coast and-perhaps his favorite-on the Big Island of Hawaii. In fact, if you ever needed to keep up on what was going on there while away from the islands, you could be sure there would be some recent copies of the local newspaper, West Hawaii Today, mailed directly from Kailua-Kona to his Lake Tapps living room.

Robert is survived by Norma, his wife of over 64 years; his children Tom (Eleanor), Nancy Kirkpatrick (Brian), and Matt (Sharon); six grandchildren; and four great-grandsons. A second daughter, Mary Jane, died as an infant in 1958 and a granddaughter, Darcy, also predeceased him in 2006.

Robert 'Bob' Quick lived a wonderful 88 years, was sharp until the end, and died suddenly but in the home he loved without any extended suffering. He had a blessed life. His personality, inquisitiveness, and love will of course be missed but his family also rejoices with him in the very full life he lived and in the hope of the Resurrection.

He was a member of TAPPI since 1952, in total for more than half a century.
 

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