ROBERT “BOB” PELTZ
Springs of Suntree
J Robert Peltz, 90, died Saturday February 20, 2016 at home. Bob was born to Albin and Ann Peltz in Schuyler, Nebraska in April 1925.
Bob was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, and was also the consummate engineer and physicist. As a young boy, Bob built his own radio from parts cannibalized from appliances around the house and neighbors. The device produced so much radio energy that the FCC arrived a few days later with a cease-and-desist order as he was interfering with civil aviation!
At seventeen, Bob enrolled at Creighton University in Omaha but after his first semester he was able to get his parent’s permission to enlist in the Navy. He began his service at Great lakes Naval Station north of Chicago. The attack on Pearl Harbor showed the Navy how lacking they were in qualified RADAR electronics technicians. To remedy this, they developed the Navy Electronics Train Program (ETP) which has been described as the most challenging training program of WWII. The crucial part was finding the best and brightest students with the aptitude for the secret RADAR electronics discipline – the “Eddy” test screening program did this.
Not only did Bob pass the “Eddy” and complete the ETP with honors, within two years he became an ETP instructor at nineteen – possibly the youngest instructor in the program. It has been asserted that the ETP and the resulting Navy predominance in the understanding and use of RADAR may have been more influential in winning WWII than the Atomic bomb. Bob trained on Naval RADAR theory and operations at Oklahoma A&M, Treasure Island in San Francisco, and taught at Navy Pier in Chicago. Many of the older recruits had trouble understanding the electronics training material but young Bob thoroughly understood it and would tutor them. At Navy Pier the brass recognized Bob as a teacher and he was stationed there as an instructor for the duration of WWII. By the war’s end he was a Chief Electronics Technicians Mate – likely the youngest Chief in the Navy at that time.
After WWII and his honorable discharge from the Navy, Bob enrolled at St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY, in 1946. In 1947 he met his future wife Jane. Bob worked for Sylvania in New York City in the summer of 1948 where Jane resided. After graduation he had a permanent job with Sylvania and the couple married in August 1950. They eventually had four sons and one daughter (Rob, Steve, Rick, Dave, and Lorri).
Bob stayed in the Inactive Navy Reserve and the couple had been married six months when Uncle Sam called him back to active duty for the Korean. Bob was put on government work but after another six months the couple was off to Norfolk for Bob to teach electronics at the Naval Radio Material School there.
After his second discharge from the Navy, Bob worked for Sylvania Electronics in Queens, New York. A year later the family moved to Emporium, PA, the original home of Sylvania. Bob then transferred to Warren PA, when the company became GTE Sylvania. Being an exceptional, creative innovator through his career, Bob received twenty-eight patents and numerous Proprietary Trade Secret Awards for electronics, mechanical, thermodynamic, fabrication, and processing inventions.
Always being an adventurer with his partner Jane, he took up skiing joining the National Ski Patrol at Buckaloons Ski Area in Youngsville, Pennsylvania. They served on the Patrol for nineteen years. He actively skied into his late seventies. Bob also was a founding member of the Kinzua Dive Team and performed numerous underwater search and rescue activities for the local authorities. He achieved SCUBA instructor level for both YMCA and PADI certifications. Bob served on the Warren, area School Board as President and was heavily involved in YMCA and church activities.
Bob always had a boat — be it an air boat in Nebraska on the Platte River to building a small pram and fixing-up a hydo-plane speed boat to refurbishing an aluminum boat into SNOOPY, that served as the family dive platform. As “empty nesters”, Bob and Jane move up to the Brass Ring, a 32’ aft-cabin Carver, and his current boats — Duet and 2 inflatables. All of them provided great adventures on many waterways across the continent. Bob was always one to share a “beer and a sandwich” with everyone he met.
Bob retired from GTE Sylvania to form his own consulting business and to travel with his wife Jane. In 1994 they moved to Florida to enjoy year round weather, boating and
SCUBA diving. Bob and Jane were world travelers visiting numerous countries and having many adventures across the US, and Canada. They could be found every year on the road in their mobile home towing one boat or another.
One of their adventures was taking their boat, the Brass Ring, from Melbourne, FL, up the intra-coastal waterway to New York state into the Erie Canal through Lake Erie and then down the Ohio River to the Tennessee Tombigbee waterway and back to their home in Florida. Read Bob’s book on their adventures “Mutiny On The Brass Ring“. Bob and Jane were still actively traveling and camping until this past January.
Bob’s ability to tell stories, his humor and wit – even when he was not feeling well—will be terribly missed, but will bring gentle smiles to us all forever . He managed to tell stories and jokes on all occasions, even until his last moments. Bob’s adventurous spirit, his humor and love of life, family, and friends lives on in his wife, Jane, and his children.
Warren Times Observer Allegheny Kinzua Country Magazine article on Bob Peltz – Warren’s Modern Day “Wizard”.
Celebration slide show for Bob Peltz
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