Robert McNamara

December 11, 1920 - December 21, 2016
Traverse City, MI



Thursday, December 29, 2016
10:00 AM EST
Holy Redemer Catholic Church
1721 Junction St.
Detroit, MI 48209

The family will greet friends starting at 9:30 am.


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Mid-Michigan Honor Flight, Inc.
PO Box 385
Mecosta, MI 49332
(231) 803-4255
Web Site


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

Cherryland Floral
1208 S. Garfield
Traverse City, MI 49686
(231) 941-5761
Driving Directions
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


Robert S. McNamara of Traverse City, formerly of Detroit, died December 21st surrounded by loving family at the age of 96.

He was the son of the late Stephen and Kathleen McNamara and the grandson of an early Detroit manufacturing pioneer, Michael McNamara of Roscommon County Ireland, who founded the McNamara Paint and Varnish Co. in 1873. Bob was a Holy Redeemer High School star athlete in the 1930’s, and was a decorated WWII Navy pilot attached to a PBY ‘Black Cat’ squadron in the South Pacific. Among his awards and citations were the Navy Air Medal and the Philippine Liberation Medal.

After his retirement from the FAA as an air traffic controller, Bob moved to Traverse City where he piloted his pontoon boat on Long Lake for many years with his family. He was a kind and generous man and was dearly loved by his family and friends. In addition to his family and friends, he loved the water and the sky with equal enthusiasm.

He is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Joan (O’Reilly), daughters Virginia, Peggy, Maureen (Jennifer Stark), sons Robert and Dennis, 7 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his beloved daughter Kathleen, his sister Elizabeth Bastien and great-grandson Ronan McNamara.

A funeral mass will be held on Thursday, December 29th 10:00 am at Holy Redeemer Church in Detroit, followed by interment at Mt. Elliott Cemetery.

Memorials can be made to the Mid-Michigan Honor Flight Inc. Please visit to sign the guest book and share your thoughts and memories with the family. The family chose Life Story Funeral Home, Traverse City.