M.E. “Bob” Nevins was joyously reunited June 4, 2017, with “his cute blonde” Hanna, whom he wed nearly 75 years ago and preceded him in death by six weeks, just a month short of his 99th birthday. He was also welcomed into eternal life by his two sons, infant Robert Michael and Robert James (Bobby).
He was the father of 11 children (nine surviving): Michael (Elisabeth), Dick (Patricia), Bill (Margaret), Barbara, Lisa, Terry (Stuart), Patricia, Mark (Julie) and Ann (William); the grandfather of 18; the great-grandfather of 13. His brother John and his family, as well as the families of his late sister Meem, further survive him.
In life, with Hanna always at his side, he was the co-founder in 1945 of Wisconsin Centrifugal, Inc. in Whitewater, moving the operation to Waukesha in 1947 where it remains strong today as Metaltek, Inc. This entire story was chronicled by Waukesha historian John Schoenknecht in The Freeman in 2014 and later in a book called “Wisconsin Centrifugal: An Amazing Story.” Long before it was fashionable, Bob started a pension and profit-sharing plan for all employees. To this day, thank-yous are often heard from many of the retirees. He also started a scholarship program for children of WCI employees who wanted to further their education in engineering, nursing, and teaching.
Through the years, he served on many local and national educational, financial, and professional board of directors becoming a strong benefactor of nearly all. He was proud of the scholarships set up in he and Hanna’s names as well as that in the family name to help many young people get a good high school and college education.
He and Hanna carved out their lives around their family, their faith, golf, traveling, entertaining employees and friends, and enjoying their winters in Naples, Florida, for 35 years. He continued to play nine holes of golf with his kids and special friends in Wisconsin at several local clubs or courses and in Florida at The Club at Pelican Bay until he and Hanna moved back to Wisconsin full time in July 2016. One mild day in November 2016, son Mike still got him out for a few holes! In later years after leaving Bluemound Country Club and with the Legends courses getting too long for him, during the summer his “favorite country club” became St. John’s Golf Club in Delafield followed by lunch at The Lumber Inn.
His family, friends and former employees will hold dear all the stories he told over the years of meeting Hanna, starting his business, golfing some of the most beautiful courses in the world, and flying his own plane for many years whether for business or pleasure. Some of the most treasured trips were to Florida, North Carolina, the Virginias, and across Canada with the People to People Aviation group. It was through these and his involvement in so many organizations that his life touched so many over his 98 years. His legacy will continue to live on through his family and countless friends and acquaintances he met along his amazing journey. Godspeed!!
A visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to noon with a short memorial service at noon on Friday, June 16, at St. Anthony’s on the Lake, W280-N2101 Prospect Ave., Pewaukee, 53072. A private family internment will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, please direct contributions to the Bob and Hanna Scholarship Funds at Missouri University of Science & Technology, 1201 N. State St., Rolla, MO 65409, or The Founder's Fund, 707 Gulf Park Drive, Naples, FL 34108.
Charapata & Zinnecker Funeral Home, Cremation and Pre-Planning
Services is serving the family. For further information, please call
262-5426609, or for directions, an online obituary, or to leave a
condolence, please visit www.WaukeshasFuneralHome.com.