Tapping his toes to the final beats, Robert Lee Cole, Jr., 81, of Kennebunk died on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, at his residence in Summer Commons in Sanford after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Bob was born in Harford, Pennsylvania, on May 28, 1941, the son of Robert, Sr. and Christine (Grinnell) Cole. He graduated from Harford High School, class of 1959. After high school, he enlisted in the US Navy and served on the aircraft carrier USS Independence CV-62 from 1959 to 1963 and was involved during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962.

Following his honorable discharge from the Navy, he married Carol Ann (Darrow) of New Milford, Pennsylvania, and moved to Arlington, Virginia, where he served an apprenticeship with Sheet Metal Workers Union Local 100. They moved to Manassas, Virginia, in 1964, and in 1976, he injured his back on a jobsite and needed to change professions. He chose to become a real estate agent on the advice of his sister, Mary Ann, who was also an agent. He earned his broker’s license and started selling real estate for Long & Foster Realtors. Over the course of his career, he was promoted to manager of the Coldwell Banker Manassas office. Later, he became licensed to provide real estate appraisals and inspections for loan originators. He continued doing that and investing in real estate until he retired in 2007.

In Virginia, he was a member of the Civitan Club, served as a Cub Scout leader for his son Kevin’s troop, and served as supervisor of the Gainesville District of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors from 1983 to 1987. He was instrumental in helping to get a permanent facility approved for Didlake, a facility for adults with mental health disabilities.

Bob was very active in his church, St. Thomas United Methodist Church, serving on multiple mission trips to India. It was on his last trip in 1997 when he met Joan from Manassas. In 2002 he married Joan and they later relocated to Kennebunk. In Maine, Bob and Joan were active in their church, the Church on the Cape, and they also sang together in Tri-City Chorus. Bob (“that’s Bob with one o” as he often introduced himself) was quick with a joke, he loved a good one-liner, and he especially loved patriotic songs and parades, always tapping his toes to the beat.

Robert is survived by his wife of 20 years, Joan Snyder-Cole of Kennebunk; a daughter, Laura (Lindsay) Smith of Kennebunk; Robin (Michael) Dailey of Delmar, New York; Kevin (Karen Ennis) Cole of Nokesville, Virginia.; and Kendra Perdue (Brian) of Manassas; and grandchildren Sophie and Charlie Smith of Kennebunk, Patrick and James Dailey of Delmar, Rachel (Ariana), Hannah, and Jared Cole, and Emily (Perdue) Levine (Brandon Levine) of Augusta, Georgia, and Adam Cole of Richmond, Virginia; as well as Bob’s previous wife, Carol. Bob was predeceased by his parents and sister, Mary Ann.

A Celebration of Life will be held Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, at Bibber Memorial Chapel, with visitation from 4 to 5 p.m., and at 5 p.m. a service led by the Rev. Sammie Maxwell of the Church on the Cape.

To leave a message of condolence, please visit Bob’s Book of Memories at www.bibberfuneral.com.

Arrangements are entrusted to Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St., Kennebunk.

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