Robert F. Kennedy, 74, of Des Moines, Iowa died May 15, 2018, at Taylor House Hospice, in Des Moines, surrounded with love.
He was born September 1, 1943, in Morgantown, son of William F. Kennedy and Betty Jo Blosser. Robert was raised primarily by his grandparents, W.E. and Nellie Blosser and his aunt and uncle, Mary E. and John A. Bertie, as his father was killed in the military 6 weeks before Robert was born.
Robert graduated from Morgantown High School in 1961, and received his Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, Fla. in 1977.
He was a decorated U.S. Navy veteran of the Vietnam War, having served in various naval aviation squadrons and other units as a Naval Flight Officer. Among his awards were three Air Medals, the Vietnamese Air Cross of Gallantry, and the Meritorious Unit Citation. After leaving active duty, he served in the U.S. Naval Reserve retiring in 1988 with over 21 years of combined active and reserve duty, with the rank of Commander, USNR.
Robert followed his lifelong love for airplanes and was employed as the Airport Manager in Akron, Ohio, La Crosse, Wis., and Charlottesville, Va. before moving to Des Moines where he was employed by the City of Des Moines as the Airport Properties Administrator from April 1986 until his retirement in August 2005.
He is survived by his wife, Sarah Etta (Summers) Kennedy; son, Robert F. (Traci) Kennedy, II, of Des Moines; daughter, Beth Ann (Daniel) Davila, of Chagrin Falls, Ohio; six grandchildren, Kelsey (Justin) Nichols, Hunter Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy, Payton Kennedy, Madison Davila, and Raelayn Davila and great-grandson, Evan-Lewis Nichols.
Hastings Funeral Home has been entrusted with local arrangements. Friends and family will be received for a committal service at Beverly Hills Memorial Gardens, in Westover, at 1 p.m., on Tuesday, June 5 with Pastor Jeff Stanley officiating. Full military funeral rites will be provided at the cemetery.
The family asks that in keeping with Robert’s love for West Virginia, please feel free to come to the service wearing your favorite Mountaineer gear.
Memorials in Robert’s honor may be made to Taylor House Hospice, 3401 E Douglas Avenue in Des Moines, IA 50317.