Robert Arnold Haaversen, 82, of Rice Lake died at home on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, surrounded by members of his family.
Robert was born on September 18, 1937, in Warroad, Minnesota, to Alf and Faith (Doke) Haaversen. Robert, lovingly known as "Buster" by his family, was the youngest of three, joining siblings Alf "Buddy" and Verna.
Robert grew up in Renton, Washington, and began a life of adventure right from the start. He learned to sail, fly an airplane, scuba dive, and went on to be a flight instructor for a time. He was an insurance salesman, Realtor, police officer, hockey rink warming house manager, candy maker, gas station owner, hobby farmer, gardener, sailboat restorer, and ceramic tile installer.
His circle of friends was small, but loyal and lifelong. Robert lived in Hawaii for many years before calling Spooner home for the last 39 years and moving to Rice Lake in September 2019. Robert loved reading, listening to music, and playing the trombone. He typically would read a book a day. He loved learning and the challenge of mastering something difficult. The fun part was the learning curve, and once it was easy, he moved on to his next challenge.
His last paid employment was as a bus driver, something he enjoyed very much and made him smile.
Robert is survived by his loving wife of 41 years, Judith Haaversen, of Rice Lake; first wife, Patricia (Chuck) Schneider of Arizona; three children, Kellie (Joe) Gillespie of Chandler, Arizona, Kathleen Haaversen of Ridgefield, Connecticut, and Kris (Sophia) Haaversen of Portugal; two stepdaughters, Susan (John) Gosz of Lake Elsinore, California, and Janis (Brad) Volker of Rice Lake; seven grandchildren, Christian (Monica) Shoemaker, Sarah Shoemaker Smith, Elijah (Nicole) Shoemaker, Jonah (Lauren Farmer) Shoemaker, Nicholas Snyder, Zachary Snyder, and Gracie Haaversen; two step-grandsons, Alexander Gosz and Riley Bridges; four great-grandchildren, Emilia, Lyndsay, Emma, and Dallas; sister, Verna (Roy) Levack of Renton, Washington, and brother, Alf (Caroline) Haaversen of Glen Rock, Pennsylvania; Aunt Edla White of Washington; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
He was preceded in death by both of his parents, Alf and Faith Haaversen.
Robert's family thanks Mayo Clinic Hospice and Touching Hearts at Home for the comfort and excellent care they provided so that he could remain at home, just as he wished. He was so thankful to everyone who helped them move from the farm.
A private service will be planned in the future to celebrate Robert's life. “Please consider donating to your local public library to honor his love of reading,” the family said.