Robert G. "Bob" Foster Sr., 78

August 21, 2009

NOV. 13, 1930-AUG. 19, 2009

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Robert G. "Bob" Foster Sr., 78, of Martinsburg, died at home surrounded by family on Aug. 19, 2009.

Born Nov. 13, 1930, in Brunswick, Md., he was the son of the late Charles Keyser "Bud" Foster Jr. and Clara Katherine (Shull) Foster.

In his youth, Mr. Foster was a member of St. Francis Catholic Church in Brunswick, where he was baptized and confirmed. He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Martinsburg for over 50 years. Bob graduated from Brunswick High School in 1948. His football career was cut short when he broke one leg in the first game of his junior year and the other leg in the first game of his senior year. These mishaps did not diminish his lifelong love of sports, although they did lead him to prefer baseball. The Baltimore Orioles were his team of choice, and as a young man, he and his brother used their family train pass to follow the team to away games in various cities.


Mr. Foster was employed by the B&O Railroad as a crew dispatcher from 1948 through 1961 and he maintained an interest in B&O memorabilia throughout his life. After leaving the railroad, he worked for the 3M Company until his retirement in 1987. Bob had an excellent memory for details and his 3M coworkers continued to consult him by telephone on product standards after his official retirement.

Bob was an officer of the 3M retirement club, a member of the Knights of Columbus, and a bingo caller at Heartland Nursing Home. He was a volunteer with Martinsburg City Hospital and with Hospice of the Panhandle for 25 years.

Mr. Foster enjoyed trivia and was a fan of "Jeopardy!" He was fond of black-and-white movies from the '30s through the '50s. He was known for his quick wit and his mastery of the one-liner. Bob appreciated big band music so much that he took clarinet lessons in order to play "Red Roses for a Blue Lady." Over the years Bob owned several cats, all named Tom, and three Boston Terriers. He enjoyed wildlife, particularly deer, and in his own backyard he fed squirrels and birds. He liked to walk and often ran errands on foot.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Meta Hope (Foster) Foster; one daughter, Roberta Gayle (Steven) Wennerstrom of Heathrow, Fla.; two sons Robert Gary Jr. of Martinsburg and Rodney Glenn of Middletown, Md.; grandchildren Jessica Andruss (Brian Campbell), Jason (Liz) Foster, Elizabeth Wennerstrom and Alex Foster, and one great grandchild; a brother, David C. Foster of San Francisco, Calif.; former daughter-in-law Kelly Foster of Frederick, Md.; and numerous nieces, nephews and friends.

He was preceded in death by a sister, Patricia Freitas, and a brother, Alan L. Foster.

The family will receive guests and visitors on Sunday, Aug. 23, 2009, from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at the Brown Funeral Home in Martinsburg.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by Monsignor Fryer at St. Joseph Catholic Church on Monday, Aug. 24, 2009, at 10 a.m. and followed by a luncheon. Interment will be in Mt. Hebron Cemetery, Winchester, Va., at 2 p.m. on Monday.

The family suggests memorial contributions to Hagerstown Round Museum "Wagon Top Caboose Project C2808", P.O. Box 2858, Hagerstown, MD 21740; Hospice of the Panhandle, 122 Waverly Court, Martinsburg, WV 25403; or St. Joseph Catholic Church, 219 S. Queen Street, Martinsburg, WV 25401.

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