Longtime Fairbanks resident Robert (Bob) Schmit passed away Sunday December 6, 2020. Bob was born in Dubuque, Iowa to Joseph and Orpha Schmit on February 4, 1931. Bob was the third of seven siblings: LuCean (Deceased), Lloyd (Deceased), Lorraine, J’Neane, Janet and Leo.
Bob grew up in Monti, Iowa on the family farm. At the age of 17 Bob joined the Marines, of course he lied about his age. After a brief stint in the Marines, where he lost a kidney, Bob returned home to Iowa with a whopping $160 in his pocket. Upon returning home Bob helped build and run the family business, The Gayla Ballroom, in Independence, Iowa hosting acts like Brenda Lee (his favorite) and Conway Twitty. In 1960, getting tired of fields and fences, Bob made his way North to Alaska. Bob settled in Fairbanks, joined by his great friend Judy. Together these two conquered the arctic and built The Cabin Inn restaurant and the Jungle Room nightclub where Bob continued hosting various musical acts.
Bob married Barbara Lambert. These two traveled the globe for a few years and then in 1970 Bob’s only child, Onole, was born. Shortly after Bob and Barbara parted ways and Onole stayed with her dad. During the 1970’s Bob ran the Cabin Inn Boarding house and Cash Loan Pawn on Barnette Street. Hosting many pipeline workers during the oil boom. City life became too much and in the 80’s Bob relocated his business to North Pole, AK. This is where Bob became known as Mr. Rozak. Running Rozak Pawn, Tire and Towing. He drove his trusty Studebaker wrecker everywhere. He eventually amassed the largest Studebaker collection in Alaska. “No you can’t buy it, they are just resting”, was often heard when someone tried to buy from his collection. Bob was selling tires until the end. He was larger than life, loved by many, never met a stranger and was always quick to help those who asked.
Bob is survived by his daughter Onole Wells (Don, deceased) and granddaughter Lorelie Stanfield, both of Wauchula, FL, siblings Lorraine Schmit, J’Neane Coffman (Dick, dec), Janet Lammers (Les), Leo Schmit (Kaye) many friends and extended family. The family would like to thank those that took care of Bob this summer: Mike, Jean, Gina, Dawn and Wyatt, Elaine. And an extra big thank you to the staff on 3West at FMH for making his final days peaceful and comfortable. Services will be held Saturday December 12, 2020 at 1pm at Blanchard Family Funeral Home at 611 Noble Street, Fairbanks Alaska with Military Honors.
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