Robert (Bob) Paul Dyer, US Army, Vietnam, 1970-71
Robert Paul Dyer, Bob was born in Dubuque, Iowa on November 18, 1947 to Robert James and Joan Genevieve Hynish Dyer. He graduated from Wahlert High School (Class of 1965) and Loras College (Class of 1969) in Dubuque, Iowa where he was a member of the Trivia Team. His major emphasis of study in college was history and philosophy.
Bob served in the Army in Vietnam in 1970-71. He was in Military Intelligence attached with the 101st Airborne, “Screaming Eagles”. During his time in Vietnam he was awarded the Bronze Star. He was very proud to serve his country and continued to honor and love those who served throughout his lifetime. (His Father Robert James Dyer flew 87 missions off carriers during WWII. see picture)
After his tour ended Bob returned home to continue his work on a Master’s degree in Journalism at the University of Iowa. While at the University, Bob worked the “sports desk” for “The Daily Iowan”, the campus newspaper, for a year before assuming the role of Sports Editor for the paper his second year.
After college Bob became a very respected “stringer”, (a free-lance journalist), for every major newspaper in Iowa. Eventually he was contacted by Leighton Housh, Sports Editor for The Des Moines Register and was hired full-time. At first, Bob was responsible for assembling the daily “layout” for the sports section at the paper. He went on to become a feature sportswriter covering all the major college sports teams at Iowa, Iowa State, the University of Northern Iowa, and Drake University.
Throughout his career he wrote sports articles for USA Today, The Sporting News, Rose Bowl publications, and provided color for Drake basketball on the radio. He was also the voice of the Drake Bulldogs. Bob served on The National Board of Basketball Writers. Bob gave the retirement speech for Johnny Orr when he retired from being the basketball coach at Iowa State at Hilton.
In later years, Bob served as the General Manager of several radio stations including KJJC 107.1 “The Jock.” He had a daily sports radio show, on “The Jock”, which usually evolved into talking about history, music, movies, books and all things MOTOWN. Bob was “Google” before it was invented. He enjoyed discussing history and politics, being with his friends, and could carry on a knowledgeable conversation on just about any subject.
Sports was Bob’s lifelong passion and he loved cataloguing information that required him to know details about athletes and sporting events, past and present. His favorite teams were the St. Louis Cardinals and The Green Bay Packers, which brought him great happiness and great frustrations. Bob loved music—especially all songs MOTOWN and musicals.
Mary Pat, Bob’s wife shares how it all began; “I met Bob Dyer on September 22, 1969 while I was attending Clarke College in Dubuque, Iowa. Bob was attending Loras College, also in Dubuque. We both graduated in 1969. I met Bob at a very “cultural” place in Dubuque, The Avenue Top…a local social gathering place for both Loras and Clarke students.”
“The first night I met Bob, feeling “empowered” after a couple drinks, I approached Bob who was over seeeing the club for his friend. My first words to him were, “You really think you’re cool, don’t you???!!!” Several days later on, a Friday afternoon, I returned to The Avenue Top. Bob realized he needed change for the the bar and asked his friend, Tim (who was talking to me at the time) to take Bob’s prize 1963 silver Corvette to get change for him. The Corvette had a Hearst linkage that Tim could not figure out. When Bob came out of the club and got into the car, I thought I would die! On the way back, Bob asked me what I was doing on Saturday. I asked him what my options were? He responded by asking me if I would like to go to an Iowa football game with him. I went to the game and the rest is history!!! He was the nicest man that I had ever dated.”
“Bob and I were married on July 10, 1976 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin at St.Francis de Sales Church. Our reception was at The Shore Club which was on Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. We honeymooned in Oahu and Maui.” Bob and Mary Pat were married for 38 years but were together for 45 years. They had two daughters, Lauren Elizabeth and Ashley Anne. Bob loved his family dearly and was especially proud of his daughters!
Lauren Elizabeth passed away this year on June 25th, at the young age 39. She was a jewelry designer, having graduated from the Revere School of Design in San Francisco. Ashley graduated from Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, Indiana. She also has her Master’s in Public Health from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Ashley Anne is currently studying Chinese Medicine where she is learning how to perform acupuncture as well as the benefits of Chinese herbs. She will complete her four-year program in August of 2020 at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in Chicago and prepare to take her state boards.
Robert (Bob) Paul Dyer of Clive, Iowa, passed away on Saturday, November 15, 2014, at the age of 66, due to long-term physical complications resulting from exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam.
“I would marry, Bob all over again!!! “We had so many great days…just not enough years!!!”
On what would have been their 43rd wedding anniversary, Mary “wrote” to Bob: “I have all of your letters from Vietnam wrapped in a ribbon and one of these days I am going to be brave enough to read them. Also, I have about 10 audio tapes that we found in your Mother’s room at the home from your sports radio shows and I want to listen to that fabulous voice again…I want to make them into a cd for family and friends…the people who enjoyed that fabulous voice and wonderful mind. You always said you had a face for radio. Ha!”
Thank you for your service to our country Bob, and for the years of service and love to family and community!