Robert E. Rogers

Robert E. Rogers

Robert “Rob” Earl Rogers, of Friday Harbor passed away on Jan. 27, 2006, after a courageous fight with cancer. He was 58.

Robert was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 20 years, Louisa Rogers. He is survived by his devoted children, son Patrick Rogers and daughter Jessica Rogers; caring mother, Kathryn Rogers; dear friend, Beth Drake, as well as many supportive relatives in the Northwest area.

Rob was born Nov. 29, 1947 in Tillamook, Ore., the son of the late Edward “Pat” and Kathryn Rogers. Rob received his schooling at Foster High in Seattle, then attended the University of Washington for sociology and pre-med. Rob’s creative mind led him to pursue more artist endeavors; he began to make stunning stained glass.

His love for the ocean and open waters brought him to the San Juan Islands in the 1970s. It was on the island where he met his future wife, Louisa Mathias. They were married June 7, 1974 in Victoria, B.C. They built their home and began raising a family.

For several years, they operated a small stained glass and pottery studio in Friday Harbor. Ready to take on new challenges, Robert combined his hard-working nature and Louisa’s green thumb to start “Dragonfly Farms,” an organic produce farm. The two owned and operated the garden for nearly seven years, growing a bounty of vegetables, fruit and corn on their 15-acre farm.

Rob was so gifted by his ability to “do” just about anything he set his mind on doing. As a result, throughout Robert’s life, he held a multitude of positions. Rob wore many hats as a logger, fisherman, boat captain, carpenter and cabinet maker, farmer, outdoorsman, artisan and many others.

Of all of his occupations, Rob truly enjoyed his work as ship engineer the most. Since Rob was extremely fond of the sea air and the ocean, he developed a great sense of pride in being the chief engineer of the 130-foot yacht, “Paulu.” For more than 10 years, Rob maintained and ran the yacht, often taking lengthy trips through Victoria, B.C., and Washington.

Rob had an extremely creative and inquisitive mind, from stained glass to beadwork, blues music to learning the guitar. He had a wealth of knowledge on a vast array of topics, which stemmed from his love of reading. He enjoyed long walks on South Beach, antique cars, Civil War history, motorcycles, animals, the Fourth of July and baking the most marvelous key lime pies.

Robert’s strong sense of family was apparent in his everyday life. He adored his children … his love for his kids was enormous. Rob remained dedicated and supportive while caring for Louisa during her long and painful battle with her cancer.

After Louisa’s passing, Rob focused his attention on artistic endeavors and his own health. He has faced countless health problems ranging from diabetes, hepatitis, chronic kidney stones, to ruptured discs, stroke and cancer. Yet he carried on, showing an inspiration of strength and courage to all around him.

Rob was a creative and strong willed man who will be dearly missed by all those who enjoyed his company and sense of humor.

A memorial service will be held for Robert on Feb. 4, 12:30 p.m. at Valley Cemetery on San Juan Island.

Donations may be made in Robert Rogers’ name to the American Cancer Society of Seattle.

— The Robert E. Rogers family