In memoriam: Bob Tomesh

Robert “Bob” Tomesh, age 63, passed away peacefully after a courageous battle with cancer on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011, at Agrace HospiceCare.

He was born in Rice Lake, the son of John and Rose (Kubista) Tomesh. Bob graduated from Rice Lake High School, went on to earn a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from the UW-Eau Claire and a Doctorate from the UW-Madison. He recently retired from the University of Wisconsin-Madison/Extension as a senior lecturer in horticulture, and outreach specialist. He was very involved with the State Master Gardeners program as its Educational Director and changed the quality of life for many gardeners in the state. He was a frequent guest speaker on Public Radio’s “Garden Talk” program with Larry Meiller. Bob loved sharing his extensive knowledge of horticulture with all, not only in the state but beyond its borders, whether it was as president of the Minnesota Grape Growers Assoc. or as a consultant internationally to countries such as Serbia and the Republic of Georgia, most recently. His knowledge was truly a valuable resource to the state, whether it was to UWEX agents, master gardeners, or neighbors, family and friends.

When not working Bob was an avid outdoorsman enjoying hunting, fishing, and nature, in addition to building the family home. What Bob loved most was being with his family.

In addition to his wife, Debra, survivors include his sons, Garett and Shane; daughters, Stephanie (Andy) Loomis and their children, Jaida and Jackson and Melissa Tomesh; his brother, Chuck (Annette); sisters, Carolyn (Stan) Lueck, Judy (Mike) Durand, and Rosemary (Ron) Kemp; his brother-in-law, Jeff (Melanie) Weber; sisters-in-law, Jackie (Marcelino) Maravilla, Cheryl (Dave) Shea, Theresa (Michael) Kiesler; his loyal dog, Dusty, who did not leave his side, as well as many other relatives and many friends.

Heartfelt thank you to the wonderful staff and doctors that cared for him at St. Mary’s Hospital, and the exceptional staff at Agrace HospiceCare Center. Visitation will be at the GUNDERSON EAST FUNERAL HOME, 5203 Monona Dr., Madison, on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011, from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. with a prayer service immediately following. On Friday, Nov. 18, 2011, a Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the HOLY TRINITY CATHOLIC CHURCH, 315 Fifth St., Haugen, at 2 p.m. Friends may also call on Friday from 12 noon until the time of service at the church in Haugen. Burial will follow in Holy Trinity Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials will be accepted for a education fund to be established on behalf of his children still at home. Please share your memories of Bob at: