Bob Flake

Bob Flake
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Robert E. “Bob” Flake, 86, of Swansea, IL, born June 18, 1929, in East St. Louis, IL, passed away on Thursday, January 28, 2016, at Memorial Hospital, Belleville, IL.

Bob graduated from Central Catholic High School in 1948.  He played baseball in the Muny Baseball League in East St. Louis.  He played softball as well as cork ball at Southside in Belleville.  Mr. Flake was employed by the Illinois Central Railroad until he was drafted into the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict from 1951 to 1953 and served as a military policeman.  After his military service, he was employed by the B&O Railroad as a machinist and then was employed by the U.S. Army Troop Support Command in St. Louis, MO, until he retired in 1988 after 27 years of service.

Bob was a member of St. Augustine of Canterbury Parish, Belleville, IL, Belleville-Swansea Moose Lodge 1221, American Legion Swansea Post 2007, the PSOP Men’s Athletic Club, and a lifetime member of the Swansea Improvement Association since 1974.   An athlete his entire life, perhaps his proudest athletic achievement was playing cork ball at age 86.  “After all,” he would say, “how many 86-year-olds can swing a bat the size of a broomstick and hit a baseball the size of a golf ball?”  He loved the St. Louis Cardinals and could name their player rosters dating back to their championship years of 1942 to 1946.

He was preceded in death by a son, James P. Flake; his parents, Louis and Rachel, nee Simpson, Flake; three brothers, Roland, Louis, and Joseph Flake; a sister, Dolores Howard; two brothers-in-law, Daniel Elrod and John Howard; three sisters-in-law, Eileen, Doris, and JoAnn Flake; a daughter-in-law, Nancy Flake; and a dear longtime friend, Doris Silvey.

Surviving are two sons, Bob Flake and Michael (Sandy) Flake;
a daughter-in-law, Lisa Flake;
11 grandchildren, Bob, Pat, Chris, Jeanette, Christine,
Valerie, Mike, Robbie, Sarah, Rachel, and Jimmy;
15 great-grandchildren;
two sisters, Mary Elaine Elrod and Rose Bennett;
and numerous nieces and nephews.

Special thanks to grandson Patrick Flake and nephew Eric Flake for all the personal assistance they rendered over the years.

Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society.  Condolences may be expressed to the family online at

Visitation:  Friends may visit from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday, February 1, 2016, at George Renner & Sons Funeral Home, Belleville, IL, and from 9 to 10 a.m. Tuesday, February 2, at St. Augustine of Canterbury Catholic Church, Belleville, IL.

Funeral:  A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Augustine Catholic Church with Msgr. William McGhee officiating.  Burial with military honors will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery, Fairview Heights, IL.

Condolences Left For Bob Flake

Sorry For Your Loss. Please accept this electronic message in lieu of a Sympathy Card. Local National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) volunteers provide help in reporting the death of any federal civilian retiree or a retiree’s spouse to proper authorities. They will explain the process as needed and if requested, can report the death to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for you. The NARFE Service Center is located in the Civilian Personnel Office, building 50, 201 W Winter St, Scott AFB. You may visit the Service Center on Tuesdays, 10AM to 2PM or call 618-256-9350. You may leave a voice mail message at other times and we will return your call the following Tuesday. You may also call either of our Service Officers, Gene Wiggins at 618 566-7980 or Dean Hemmer at 618 233-3819, for immediate assistance if required.

Gene Wiggins NARFE Chap 1019, Mascoutah, ILLINOIS, 62258

Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Bob and I were long time friends. All brought about by our love of the ballgame. We played softball together for many years. He was also one of my best friends off the field. He had the best hands of any player I had encountered. A great, great friend and I will miss him.

jim & Carol Cange, nashville, il, 62263 5802

Bob, reading of the loss of your dad brought to mind how Dennis treasured your friendship, and I wish to extend my thoughts and prayers to you and your family. Memories are the legacy of love. May your those memories ease your grief and bring you comfort.

Susie Vahle, Ofallon, IL, 62269

I am so sorry about the loss of your father. These are the moments that test our true strength. I wish you much strength and courage now and always. We lost a good thing when we lost touch with each other. I will always be a friend to you, you are so much like a brother to me. I’m am always available if you want to talk or get together. Our love goes out to you.

Tom and Roxanne Walsh, Springfield, MO, 65810


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