Thursday November 17, 2022
2:00PM - 8:00PM with Scripture at 7:00PM
Fred Wood Funeral Home
36100 5 Mile Road Livonia (East of Levan)
Friday November 18, 2022
10:00AM Instate and 10:30AM Mass
St. Edith Catholic Church
15089 Newburgh Road
Livonia, MI 48154
Age 95, of Livonia, MI, passed peacefully into his eternal rest early Friday Morning, 11 Nov 2022, while under hospice care at the home of David and Elizabeth Carignan. Robert (Bob) was born 12 Oct 1927 in the small rural community of Cornell, Delta County, Upper Michigan to Nels and Alice (VanDrese, Brabazon) Carignan. He is survived by his sister Anne (Doug) Carignan Smith of Santa Rosa, CA, and children: Donna, Donald, Darla, Daryl, Dianna and Dennis. He is additionally survived by extended family: Daniel (Daisy), Denice (Eric), David (Elizabeth), Larry (Carol), Mercedia (David G), Sandra (Russel -d), Michelle (Kenton) and many grand / great grandchildren. He is proceeded in death by his siblings Harry Charles, Sadie Germaine, Norbert Edward and Gerald Elmer as well as sons: Robert Dale and David Eugene. Also proceeding him in death are his wife Catherine Anna and her children Karen (Joe) and Gerard.
Bob was 2nd of a family of six children and grew up doing the hard work of clearing land, digging shallow wells, and raising potatoes, hay and a few livestock. Feeling restless, at age 22 Bob left home to join the U.S. Army. He eventually ended up involved in the Korean conflict as a wire communications technician. During his Korean tour he survived a bout of malaria as well as was awarded the purple heart for being wounded in action. In 1951 he was rotated out of Korea and sent state side to Fort Carson, Colorado. In January 1952 he was discharged, married Alice Ellis in 1954, and, settled in Pueblo, CO working at the Army Depot. Bob and Alice's marriage after 8 children ended in divorce in 1974.
Shortly thereafter, Bob married the love of his life Catherine Anna Carignan, the widow of his brother Norbert Edward who had died in a boating accident in 1970. Bob became stepfather to her 7 children still at home and endeavored to build a new life in a move back to Colorado. Bob then retired from the Army Depot in 1975 and in 1976 he and Cathy would start a trend of moving back and forth between Colorado, Wisconsin and Michigan with eventually ending up in the Detroit area to be closer to family.
Bob was blessed with vigorous health which he maintained with a devotion to exercise to the very end. He was a hard worker all his life and never shrunk from a challenge. His amazing memory for dates and events was always a wonder to his family. Bob was an avid sports fan who remained ever faithful to the Green Bay Packers and St. Louis Cardinals. Over his many years he developed a love for hunting and often told stories about his times in Colorado mountains taking down elk and having to haul them out of the rugged mountain terrain. He also enjoyed dancing, gardening, campfires, doing puzzles, and shaping logs with a chainsaw into dogs, bears, eagles, otters and totem poles. Above all things, he loved to be a help to others and found his niche of being able to often do so at Villa Marie, the Senior living community where he spent his last years. He became the go-to guy there whenever anyone needed a hand. His presence there brightened the lives of so many.
Bob considered the 43 years he shared with his wife Catherine to be the most significant and meaningful of his long life. He credited her with teaching him how to love and how to be a loving person. He admired her and felt such gratitude for being a part of her life and her family. He expressed many times the joy he experienced in his many loving relationships with his grandchildren.