Life Story / Obituary
Robert Lippert, 85, of Mt. Pleasant passed away Monday, April 16, 2018, at McLaren Central Michigan with his family at his side. A Funeral Mass for Bob will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Friday, April 20, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church with Father Don Henkes as celebrant. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery with a luncheon following at Lincoln Reception Center (attached to Charles R. Lux Family Funeral Home). The family will receive friends at Charles R. Lux Family Funeral Home on Thursday from 4-8 p.m. with the Vigil beginning at 7:30 p.m. Visitation continues at the church on Friday one hour prior to Mass. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting memorial contributions be made to the Robert J. Lippert Scholarship Fund. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home and church.
Bob was born May 17, 1932, in Alma, MI, fourth son of the late Ackley and Myrtle (Boddy) Lippert. A 1950 graduate of Alma High School, Bob served in the U.S. Navy from 1951-1954. He was stationed in Korea during the Korean Conflict. On April 2, 1956, Bob married Marie Mantei in Spalding, MI at St. John Neumann Catholic Church. After an honorable discharge from the Navy, Bob became the first in his family to attend college. He graduated from Central Michigan University receiving both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics and a specialist’s degree in education. This ignited his passion for teaching and he used his education to start his career as a math and drafting teacher at Mt. Pleasant High School.
Always going beyond his job, Bob led the Driver’s Education program and taught a lot of the Mt. Pleasant population how to drive. In addition to teaching, Bob also worked nights at the Embers restaurant where he developed his love for cooking under the tutelage of his long-time friend, Clarence Tuma. When MPHS was looking to start a vocational foods program, Bob was a perfect fit. He accepted that opening and never looked back. His program became one of the best in the country, winning multiple state and national awards. But what he was most proud of was helping many young students find a direction and get a career in the hospitality industry. To this day, his former students are operating some of the best restaurants spanning the entire country.
His love of sports led him into being the Sports Information Director at MPHS, and as usual, he took it to another level, doing all the statistics, working with the media, helping the pep clubs and even driving the cheerleaders to the away football and basketball games. This eventually extended to CMU where he was an avid booster, including helping CMU’s baseball team and good friend, Dean Kreiner. Bob became CMU’s Baseball Fan of the Year in 1994 for his contributions.
Continuing his craft in the Culinary Arts, Bob became a member of (and was in leadership positions in) many national culinary organizations including the Order of the Golden Toque, the American Culinary Federation, and culminating in 2013 to being inducted into the American Academy of Chefs Culinary Hall of Fame during the organization’s national convention in Las Vegas. He also held teaching positions at Michigan State University and Lansing Community College and was instrumental in launching the Culinary Arts program at Ferris State. With all of this, it’s amazing to think he had any free time. But when he did, he was an avid golfer and bowler for years, and was inducted into the Mt. Pleasant Bowling Association Bowler’s Hall of Fame in 1998.
His biggest love was his family and helping share his value of education. He and his wife Marie helped their three sons get a college education. That gift has extended to his grandchildren as they are all either in college or have since graduated. Bob was a dedicated husband and is survived by Marie, his wife of 62 years. He is also survived by his three sons, Rob Lippert, Jr. of DeWitt, Jeff (Sue) Lippert of Grand Rapids, Mark (Diana) Lippert of Santa Cruz, CA; seven grandchildren, Jacob and Spencer, Nathan and Jordan, and Nicholas, Maximus, and Moorea; one great-granddaughter, Kennedy; one brother, Larry (Dorothy) Lippert of Alma; sister-in-law, Ann Lippert of Alma, and numerous nephews and a niece. He was preceded in death by his parents; and brothers, Francis, William, and Richard ‘Dickie’. To leave a condolence for the family or to sign the online guest book please visit www.CharlesRLux.com