Bob Flath

1429966_profile_picBob Flath, age 87, of 195 Route 322, Cranberry PA, died at his home on October 5, 2014.

He was born on October 22, 1926 in Greensburg, PA the son of Arnold and Elsie (Fraase) Flath.

He was a 1944 graduate of Greensburg High School and then receive a Bachelor’s degree in education from Clarion State Teacher’s College in 1950 and a Master’s degree in education from the University of Pittsburgh. He played football at all three schools and was a state wrestling champion in Greensburg and at Clarion State.

Bob’s teaching career started in Brockway, PA. He then moved on to Franklin, PA, Lindenhurst (Long Island), NY, and ended his career in Oil City. While he taught a variety of subjects, he was a social studies teacher. He coached football and wrestling at each of the schools and introduced wrestling in Franklin and was their head football coach for three years, playing a large part in changing the school’s name from the Nursery to the Black Knights. His wrestling teams from Oil City won four section championships and hand numerous section, district, two regional champions, and one runner-up for the state wrestling championship.

Bob was President of the Oil City Area Education Association for many years and was on the negotiating committee and also served as Chief Negotiator for the Association.

He enjoyed traveling and was on education tours to India and Egypt. In India, the tour group spent and hour with Indira Ghandi in her home, and in Egypt, they had tea with Jehan Sadat. He had toured in Italy, Greece, France, England, Scotland, Ireland, Mexico, the former U.S.S.R., and numerous trips to Scandinavia where he visited a former American Field Service exchange student to Oil City High School.

Bob was a member of the board of Youth Alternatives, the board of the United Community Independence Programs, and was program director for the Oil City Arts Council and brought many local, American, and international music entertainers to the city in the Art Council’s Arts in the Park, the winter series of concerts, First Night, in individually helped start Arts in the Transit.

His farm was a treasure and he developed the barn into a dinner party barn and again brought outstanding national and international artists for concerts there for the enjoyment of his friends. His last “big” party was held September 20th of this year. He enjoyed it to the hilt, as he did almost everything in his life.

He also took guitar lessons for a number of years from Terry Huber and then from Bill Huber, Sr., and was an original member of the Venango Chorus, singing bass.

Bob was drafted into the United States Navy in 1944. After basic training, he was sent to Sampson, NY, to go to radio school. After completing the course, he was sent to Little Creek, VA, for amphibious training, where he was when the war ended.

On April 29, 1948, Bob married Marilyn F. Bastress, who survives. Marilyn also enjoys traveling, especially to Denmark, Mexico, and California to visit their daughter and son-in-law. Together, they enjoy flower gardening, Bob especially loving his roses.

In addition to his parents, Bob was preceded in death by a sister, Doris Matteson, and his two brothers, Raymond and Arnold Jr.

He is survived by his wife, Marilyn, his daughter, Gretchen (Patrick) McGinley of Franklin, PA, and his son, Eric Flath of Knox.

The family suggests memorial donations be made to the Oil City Arts Council, 21 Seneca Street, Oil City PA 16301.

At his request, there will be no visitation or services. After cremation, his ashes will be spread over his farm.

To send condolences online, visit www.goblefh.com.


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