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Juneau resident Robert "Bob" J. Hillyer Sr., 81, died Sept. 14, 2005, at home.
He was born June 23, 1924, in Durango, Colo., and lived his early life there. He served in the Army during World War II and married Mary Katherine "Kathy" on Sept. 2, 1944. At 20 years old, he started his first business, a roller skating rink. He continued as an entrepreneur throughout his life. He had a dude ranch in Colorado, a logging company and ranch in Oregon, but his greatest success was his construction company in California and Arizona.
After establishing a campground in California, he moved in 1975 to Juneau, where he was a member of the operating Engineers Local 302. Upon retirement, he established Hillyer Enterprises, a company supplying crab pots, shrimps pots and other fishing supplies for Alaskans made by Alaskans.
He considered Juneau his home and enjoyed the people and outdoors. His friends and family say that he "was always willing to give a helping hand to those who needed a father and a friend."
He is survived by his wife of 61 years; his sons, Rye Hillyer of Hollywood, Fla., and Rob Hillyer and his wife, Valerie, of Juneau; his daughters, Bonnie Ragan and her husband, Larry, of Rohnert Park, Calif., and Alice McNeer and her husband, Jim, of Kent, Wash.; and 11 grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and numerous friends.
A memorial celebrating his life will be held at 3 p.m. Sept. 18, at the Travelodge.