Robert B. Gaines obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Robert B. Gaines

February 9, 1923 - November 27, 2016

Obituary


Robert Byron Gaines, Jr. passed away peacefully in his home in Midland, Texas November 27, 2016.

"Bob" Gaines was born in Fort Worth, Texas on February 9, 1923 to Robert Byron Gaines Sr. and Gertrude Spear his wife.

Eleven years later an event occurred that would change Bob's life forever when he was run over by a truck that crushed his right leg. He would spend the next two years in a wheel chair and undergo numerous surgeries that would ultimately leave that leg 3 inches shorter then his left leg. While perhaps...

Robert Byron Gaines, Jr. passed away peacefully in his home in Midland, Texas November 27, 2016.

"Bob" Gaines was born in Fort Worth, Texas on February 9, 1923 to Robert Byron Gaines Sr. and Gertrude Spear his wife.

Eleven years later an event occurred that would change Bob's life forever when he was run over by a truck that crushed his right leg. He would spend the next two years in a wheel chair and undergo numerous surgeries that would ultimately leave that leg 3 inches shorter then his left leg. While perhaps this was a disability, it was never a handicap.

Bob became a cheerleader at Arlington Heights High School. After graduation he attended the University of Texas where he earned a Bachelor of Science and Masters of Arts degree in geology. While in school, he took up fencing and became the captain of the University of Texas fencing team. He was a member of the Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity.

At the university, Bob met his wife, Betty Land. They were married on June 6, 1949. In 1951 they moved to Midland, Texas. They lived in a small apartment before building a home on East Oak Street where their first son, Robert Vallee was born. In 1956, the family moved to Omaha, Nebraska when Bob began to work for Northern Natural Gas. While in Omaha they added two more children to the family, Richard Spear and Gayanne. In 1970, the family was transferred back to Midland, Texas.

In Omaha Bob began a long time association with the Boy Scouts when his two sons joined Cub Scouts. He took on many roles as a scout leader, merit badge councilor and was also a leader of the adult scout leaders, helping to train them to train the boys. In scouting Bob went on many camp outs one of them an extremely cold minus 30 degrees in Nebraska. He went on several canoe trips to the boundary waters in Minnesota with the scouts, to the Philmont Scout ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico, attended the Boy Scout National Jamboree in Boise, Idaho and also started a scout troop in Midland. Bob earned the highest Scouting award for an adult leader, the Silver Beaver award. Bob continued in scouting for more than fifty years helping boys learn the ways of scouting.

Professionally, Bob was a Geologist and Petroleum engineer. In the mid sixties he applied, took the test and received his Professional Engineer license. He was awarded the Pioneer Award by the West Texas Geological Society in 2005. He retired in 1988.

Bob was a member of the Downtown Midland Lions Club and won the Jack Welch Fellow Award for service to Texas Lions Camp for Crippled Children.

He was a Thirty Second Degree Mason and received the honorary Red Hat award. His love for children and devotion to those with hardships were keen driving forces in Bob's life. Bob became a Shriner. As a Shriner he rose through the ranks and was the Potentate of the Suez Shrine club in 2001-2002. He also served on the Board of Directors for the Shrine Hospital in Houston, Texas. Bob particularly enjoyed walking folks through and showing off the work done in that facility.

Bob loved sports. As his children grew he naturally became a coach, first as a Little League coach for the boys then as a softball coach for his daughter. For many years he would coach and mentor youngsters, boys and girls, on how to play ball. He also had a rule that every child no matter their level of talent would get to play in the game. Sometimes that didn't work for the team's advantage, but Bob thought that it was more important that the team learn to live with all of their advantages and disadvantages than just winning. It was an important life lesson for the kids.

Bob loved to hunt and fish and took the family on numerous trips. He also played golf and was on the Shriner golf team that would travel and play in different parts of the country. He loved to ballroom dance with his beautiful wife Betty and they could be seen dancing as members of the Ballroom Dance club

Bob was a member of and held numerous offices with St. Andrews and Trinity Presbyterian churches in Midland and First Presbyterian Church in Omaha. Bob was also a member of Grace Presbyterian church. Bob was a founder of the St. Andrews Mission and Clinic.

Bob is preceded in death by his parents, Robert Byron Sr. and Gertrude Spear Gaines and by his youngest son, Richard Spear Gaines.

He is survived by his wife Betty Land Gaines, his son Robert Vallee Gaines and wife Edellweiss; his daughter Gayanne Bett and husband Tom and their three children Sarah, Tommy and Rachel Bett.

The family would like to thank Bob's caregiver's: Manuel, Brad, Bobbi, Socorro, and Melissa.

Services will be held on Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 3:00 PM at Grace Presbyterian Church in Midland, Texas. Graveside service at Resthaven Memorial Cemetery with a reception to follow at Grace Presbyterian Church

If you wish to honor Bob with a donation, please following organizations that were close to his heart: St. Andrews Mission/ Clinic at 1708 N. Fort Worth Street, Midland, TX 79701, the Boy Scouts Buffalo Trail Council at 1101 W. Texas Avenue, Midland, TX 79701, and the Shriners Hospital for Children-Houston at 2900 N. Rocky Point Drive Tampa, Fl 33607 or www.shrinershospitalforchildren.org

Online condolences may be offered at www.ellisfunerals.com