Robert (Bob) Charles Fritz, 81, died on July 15, 2023 in The Villages, FL. Bob was born August 10, 1941, in Chicago, IL, to the late Manila (Nell) Fritz (nee Johnson) and Robert Fritz. Bob led a life filled with its own triumphs, challenges and missed opportunities.
Bob attended Belvidere High School in Belvidere, IL, where he graduated in 1959. After high school Bob worked for several years at Ingersoll Rand Corporation in Rockford, IL before moving to Kalamazoo, MI to work for PRAB Industries. Following a stroke at age 48, Bob retired to Florida where he remained until his passing.
Bob is survived by his sons, Kelly (Lynn) Sperl, Appleton, WI, Todd (Andrea) Sperl, Huntington Woods, MI, his daughter Missy Fritz, Kalamazoo, MI.
Bob is also survived by multiple grandchildren including Ross (Michelle) Sperl, San Antonio, TX, Kassi (Ryan) Towne, Appleton, WI, Kyle (Sarah) Sperl, Appleton, WI, Allie Sperl, Huntington Woods, MI, Mac Sperl, Huntington Woods, MI, and Jake Ohm, Kalamazoo, MI; several great grandchildren, Travis, Bradley and Delilah Sperl, San Antonio, TX, and Jack Kelly Towne, Appleton, WI, and Kyle and Sarah Sperl's baby girl due Nov., 2023.
Other living relatives include his sister Sandy Fritz Anderson (late Ken), Belvidere, IL, his brother Ed Fritz (Erin), Colfax, CA, numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. Bob was preceded in death by his parents Robert and Manila Fritz, his eldest son Brian Robert Sperl and his brother-in-law Ken J. Anderson.
At Bob's request there will be no service, a celebration of his life will happen at a later date. In lieu of flowers, we ask that you donate to LovExtension (www.lovextension.com). This wonderful organization works to improve the quality of life for seniors and disabled adults in Lake County and the Villages where Bob spent his last few years.
While we bid him farewell, we reflect on the complexities of our relationship and acknowledge the impact both positive and negative of his minimal participation throughout our lives. We, his children, strive to break the cycle, nurturing the relationships within our own families and supporting one another through humor, love and understanding.
In moving forward, we extend our gratitude to those who have provided Bob support, guidance and understanding over the years, including Bob's Florida neighbor for many years Miguel Quintana. Miguel watched over Bob making sure he had what he needed when he needed it. Also, a huge thank you to Delores (Dolly) McCranie, Bob's Clinical Healthcare Advocate. She helped us navigate Bob's final years of care. Dolly said she will miss all of Bob's vim and vigor, i.e., when he replied with "God damn it" and "bullshit" when asked to behave or do something he didn't want to do. "One thing we know for sure, Bob lived life his way, on his own terms and when he decided to quit, he went out his way" – Dolly.
No matter what kind of a father he was, our families have been blessed with his children Brian, Kelly, Todd, and Missy and all their kids. What better way to measure the success of your life than by your children. Bob's legacy is the thing he overlooked the most, his children. He can now watch from above and see what he missed in his life.