Robert E. “Bob” Hollander of Fort Myers, formerly of Punta Gorda, passed away on Wednesday, April 21, 2010 surrounded by his loved ones. He was 81.
Born on March 1, 1929 in Chicago, Ill, he moved his family to Punta Gorda in 1970. There, he served as City Manager until 1980 and then moved to Sanibel to serve as Manager of Island Water Association until he retired in 1994.
Bob began his career as a water meter reader and ditch digger for the city of Palatine, Ill. in 1953 and worked his way up the ranks to eventually serving as City Manager from 1961 to 1966. Determined to expand his opportunities, he entered college at 37 and earned a BA from Shimer College in Mt Carroll, Ill. and a MA from Northern Illinois University. While an undergraduate, he served as City Manager for Savanna, Ill from 1966 to 1969.
He was an avid sailor and enjoyed many cruises around Florida and the Bahamas, but he most treasured his sailing adventures to Cuba and Guatemala in the late 1990’s. Bob and Annie Estlund, sailed the “Great Circle Tour” up the Atlantic Seaboard to the Great Lakes then back down via the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico and home to Fort Myers. He was a founding member and served as commodore of Sailing Singles of Lee County.
Bob, who was active in the Lee County Mensa Society, was a creative and imaginative tinker. He was a house designer and builder, electronics wizard and co-author on a patent for a reverse osmosis water purification process. He loved music, literature, films and photography.
He will be greatly missed by his loving daughters, Gail Hollander and Laura Rebol; grandson, Matthew Rebol and devoted partner, Annie Estlund.
A service in celebration of Bob’s life will be at 2 p.m. this Sunday, May 2 at All Faiths Unitarian Church, located at 2756 McGregor Blvd. in Fort Myers. Memorial donations may be made to All Faiths Unitarian Congregation, P.O. Box 07477, Fort Myers, FL 33919. Donations will be used to establish a scholarship in his name for late entrant college students at Florida International University.