Robert “Bob” A. Arkens

Resided in Escanaba, Michigan
Died March 21st, 2020

Robert “Bob” A. Arkens, 81, of Escanaba, passed away on Saturday, March 21, 2020 at Christian Park Village.

He was born on January 16, 1939 in Wilson, MI, son of William and Pauline (Miller) Arkens.  Bob graduated from Bark River High School in 1957.

Bob served active duty for six months in the Army Reserve in 1955.

On April 29, 1961, Bob married Marilyn Johnson at St. Patrick’s Church in Escanaba.  She preceded him in death on January 21, 2003.

Bob had worked for Michigan White Cedar (post yard), Meiers Signs, and then in 1965 began his career at Mead Paper Company, retiring as a super-calendar operator in March of 2001.

He was a member of St. Anne’s Church, YMCA and the Mead Sportsman Association.

Bob loved spending time at camp with his son Bill and going swimming at the YMCA.  He was a farrier by trade and he had a love of shoeing and trimming horses.  Bob was an avid Detroit Tiger and Lions fan.

He is survived by his daughter, Denise of Green Bay, WI; son, William “Bill” (Becky) Arkens of Escanaba; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents and wife, Marilyn; Bob was preceded in death by his stepfather, Henry Bonjean; siblings, Joseph, George, Harvey, Richard Arkens and Mary Fox; and father and mother in law, Raymond and Josephine Johnson.

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, private services will be held at the convenience of the family at the Crawford Funeral Home in Escanaba with Rev. Darryl Pepin officiating.

Bob will be laid to rest next to his wife, Marilyn in the Holy Cross Mausoleum.

A very special thank you to the staff and residents of Christian Park Village for their care, friendship and support to Bob and family during his stay with them.

Memorial tributes may be shared on our website by visiting

The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the Arkens family.


15 Tributes to “Robert “Bob” A. Arkens”

  1. I’m so sad to see this but truly blessed to have the honors of meeting and taking care of Bob! He was one of a kind. He always knew how to make me laugh. I will forever miss my hugs and kiss on the cheek. Prayers and hugs for his family to give them strength through this difficult time.

  2. Bob I’m gonna miss you buddy, it’s not gonna be the same over there without your big smile, rest easy my friend and know that you were loved.

  3. Sorry for your loss. Loosing a loved one is always hard. Our condolences to you all.

  4. So sorry for your loss. Bob was one of a kind and always had a good joke to tell. God Bless

  5. So sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. On behalf of Grace Hughes together we extend our deepest sympathy. Prayers from our family to yours during this difficult time.

  6. So sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. I had the pleasure of many outings as the DATA bus driver with Bob. It was always a pleasure to be with him.

  7. Bill and Denise, so sorry for the loss of your Dad. He was one of a kind!!!
    Take Care..

  8. To Bob’s family I send my deepest sympathy. The hours at the Papermill would’ve deemed longer if it wasn’t for Bob. He gave me a nickname ( Scratch ). No idea where that came from. Unless he called everyone that? He’s in a good place now. RIP Bob🙏

  9. Our condolences to Denise, Bill and Becky. I will remember Bob for his love and wonderful care of my cousin Marilyn and his love for his children. He was so kind to my parents, especially in their older years. He made sure my dad got to the Mead events for retirees. He always called me when he saw local news that I would want to know. We will miss his smile and his hugs. Rest In Peace, dear friend . Suzie (Elegeert) and Leroy Rappette

  10. It was with great sadness I learned of Bob’s passing. He was such a bright light and faithful attendee at the weekly mass. He was always on top of things and kept us volunteers from St. Anne’s on our toes. We will miss him tremendously. Deepest sympathy to you all.
    Bonnie Westin , St. Anne Parish

  11. Bob and I had some great times in the past couple of years. I have fond memories that I will hold dear to me. He was a great man. Prayers to all!

  12. Sorry to hear of Bob’s passing- sending our sympathy to your family

  13. Denise, Bill and Becky: I’m so sorry to hear of Bob’s passing, he loved you all tremendously and spoke of you in our every conversation. He was such a special friend of ours. He trimmed my horses for almost 40 years and I could always count on him to be there when a horse had a problem. He taught me how to trim their feet, how to fit my harnesses and how to work my Clydesdales. We had a lot of great conversations, he was certainly never at a loss for something to say and he was truly a wealth of helpful information. And how he loved his camp, deer mounts and tractor! We enjoyed visiting at camp and all the bonfires.
    I enjoyed sitting near him at the horse-pulling contests at the fairgrounds. He knew all the pullers and was familiar with many of the horses as well.
    I’m so sorry I wasn’t able to visit him at Christian Park as often as I would have liked especially in this past year. Since my husband’s Alzheimers diagnosis and its quick progression I haven’t been able to get out to do much except the essentials, but he was often on my mind. I will miss him much however I’m glad he’s no longer suffering and that his days now are filled with bright conversation and draft horses – but I sure hope he doesn’t have to trim them! Bless you all for being so good to him. Please accept my sincere condolences.

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