On Friday, April 25, 2008, Robert J. "Bobby" Kramer, a beloved friend
and life long member of the community was taken from us in a
tragic farm accident.
Bob was born in Hood River on Nov. 15, 1954, to Anita Hasagawa and
Leon Kramer. He attended both Frankton Elementary School and
Wy'East High School. During his early school years Bob enjoyed
playing little league baseball, and in his later years Bob was on
the high school wrestling team. He was told that he wouldn't be able
to do either, but at an early age proved he could do
whatever he set his mind to. Bob graduated from Hood River Valley
High School in 1973. Except for a brief stint living in
Portland while attending Mt. Hood Community College with his brother,
Allan Tengwall, Bob lived in Hood River the entire 53 years
of his life.
Bobby was known by all as a fun loving and adventurous man. He
enjoyed life, his friends, and mostly his family which has
expanded over the years to include most of Hood River County. Bobby
was a stranger to no-one; you met Bob once and you were
friends forever. Bob was a very personable and confident man. A man
with a huge personality, and a sense of humor to match. Bob
was known best for his playful banter and mischievous ways. Bobby was
always up for a challenge. He was determined to the point
of stubborn. At 4' 4" Bob was bigger than most men and he stood 7'
tall. He was told many times that he couldn't do it, or it
couldn't be done. He took great pride in proving it could be done, he
could do it, and in proving you wrong.
Family and friends were Bob's universe; his wife Anita and daughter
Tara were the center of his universe. The Kramer house is
considered home by many. Kids throughout the valley called Bob "Dad"
and call Anita "Mom." Dinner was always a social event
which Bob relished. Kids were drawn to the Kramer home because they
could confide in Bob. He would tell them how it was. He put
it to them straight and didn't pull any punches. All kids were
treated with respect, and Bob demanded and received respect in
Bobby loved many things. He was an avid Harley-Davidson fan enjoying
all things Harley, and was planning to purchase a Harley
trike. Bob loved animals, but dogs and cats were his favorites. He
loved to watch and participate in sports. Bowling was a
favorite sport, and he was a league bowler for many years. Bob also
loved to play golf and especially enjoyed those times when he
played with his father, Leon Kramer. It surprised many of his closest
friends that Bob could out drive them on the golf course.
He enjoyed playing both sports until back problems prevented him from
continuing to play. In addition to sports Bob was involved
in the community. He was an active member for over 30 years in the
Hood River Elks Lodge, and past officer. He was also a member
of the American Legion, and a member of Little People of America (LPA).
Bob met Anita at an LPA convention in 1973 after Anita pushed him into
a swimming pool. In true form, Bob did get her back later
that night. They continued a long distance romance for a number of
years until they were married in Tempe, Arizona, on Feb. 20,
1982. A source of great pride, the joy and light of his life, his
daughter Tara, was born in 1983.
Bobby was employed by the US Forest Service for 19 years as a
dispatcher, purchasing agent, and fire supply supervisor; a job at
which he excelled. Bob was known state wide as the man that "Would"
get the job done. His reputation for getting things done
earned Bob and his family numerous interrupted summer outings, events,
and even a vacation as the Forest Service tracked Bob down
where-ever he was because he was needed to help fight a forest fire.
After the passing of Bob's step-father, Tom Hasagawa, in 1993, Bob
worked with his brother Kenny Kramer for a short period running
the family orchard. In 1996, Bob retired from the forest service to
help his mother, Anita Hasagawa, manage the orchard full-
time. Once again people told Bob he couldn't do it, and once again
Bobby proved "anything is possible." Bob became a great
Orchardist growing top quality fruit, and earned the respect of
orchardists throughout the valley.
On April 19, 2008, it was Bob's greatest pleasure and honor to walk
his daughter Tara down the wedding isle, and to welcome Todd
A. Williams into his family. Bob's star shined brightest that night
as he saw his daughter get married to a man Bob loved and was
honored to call son. He was in his element; surrounded by family and
friends at the dinner table laughing and telling jokes. The
look in his eyes and the smile on his face during the father-daughter
dance made it apparent that this day was one of the happiest
of Bob's life.
Bob leaves behind an extended family that loves and misses him dearly.
He is survived by: Anita Kramer, his wife of 26 years,
daughter and son-in-law, Tara & Todd Williams, mother Anita Hasagawa,
father and step-mother Leon & Joanne Kramer, all of Hood
River. Bob is also survived by four brothers and a sister: brother
and sister-in-law Kenny & Lori Kramer, of Maricopa, AZ,
brother and sister-in-law Allan and Julie Tengwall, of Hood River,
sister and brother-in-law Lynn & Marc Potter, of Myrtle Point,
OR, brother Mark Tengwall, of Portland, OR, and brother Wayne
Tengwall, of Hood River. Bob also leaves behind 17 adoring nieces
and nephews, numerous cousins, aunts and uncles, countless friends
that are considered family, uncounted children of different
parents, and broken hearted women throughout the state.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 PM, on Friday, May 2, 2008, at
the Bowe Theater at Hood River Valley High School. The
family requests informal dress with jeans and Harley-Davidson T-shirts
encouraged. Grave side services will be held afterward at
Idlewild Cemetery. Following the grave side services you are invited
to join the family at The Hood River Elks Lodge for
Donations can be made to the Robert Kramer memorial fund in care of
Anderson's Tribute Center (Funerals • Receptions • Cremations) 1401
Belmont Ave., Hood River, OR 97031 www.andersonstributecenter.com