Robert Nelson Kilbourn
Robert Nelson Kilbourn passed peacefully in his mountain home in Glen Haven, Colorado Sept 18, 2009. Bob Kilbourn loved the mountains and his family.
Born July 31, 1931, and raised on Kilbourn Ranch near Sterling, KS. Bob attended Sterling elementary and High Schools, Virginia Military Institute, and graduated with a degree in Geology from Kansas State University. He served as an Officer in the US Army with a rank of 1st Lt. Bob spent 25 years Farming and Ranching near Sterling, KS before making a career change, moving full time to the Rocky Mountains and becoming a R.N. at the age of 50.
Bob was a keen aviation enthusiast and Pilot. Bob climbed countless mountains, including 14,255’ Longs Peak, the 1st time on his 14th birthday, the last, with his family on his 70th birthday. Bob Hiked up to 30 miles a week year round in and around Rocky Mountain National Park. Until his passing, Bob led hikes with the Colorado Mountain Club.
In addition to hiking, Bob walked his 1st of 5 marathon / half marathons in Estes Park @ 72 years of age. He enjoyed bowling (high score 299) and ping pong with friends, and was an avid sports fan, devotedly following Kansas State University athletics as well as the Colorado Rockies and Denver Broncos.
He was known for his ever-present kind greeting, vice grip handshake, and friendly smile to everyone he met on life’s trails. As an ideal role model, Bob proudly led a clean life, at no time consuming alcohol or smoking.
Bob’s messages to his family were to “Take care of the next generation, watch over their health, and teach them to love each other.” Also to “Take care of the mountains, because they can’t take care of themselves, and take care of the animals”.
Bob was preceded in passing by his parents Roberta and Nelson Kilbourn.
He was a loving brother, father and grandfather. Those who continue to hike and love the mountains in his honor are brother David Kilbourn (KS), Carol Jean Kilbourn (CO) and five children: Barbara and husband Hooper Crane (Oregon), Robert Kilbourn and wife Christina Stone (CO), Sharon and husband Norm Roesch (Alaska), Gary Kilbourn and partner Yelena Arkhangeskaya (CA), and Eric and wife Keturah Kilbourn (CO). His Grandchildren are Cody Jane Crane (Wash.), Amanda Crane and Wrangle Crane (Oregon), Makena Roesch (CO), Tyler Roesch (Alaska), Nikita Zamora (CA), and Jaden and Shea Kilbourn (CO).
Memorial Service were held Wednesday, at the Presbyterian Community Church of the Rockies, 1700 Brodie Ave., Estes Park, CO.
Contributions may be made to the Colorado Mountain Club Foundation in care of Kibbey-Fishburn Funeral Home, 1102 N. Lincoln Ave. Loveland, Colorado 80537.