Robert Douglas Zeeb

November 1, 1932April 13, 2018

Bob Zeeb was a farmer, a man outstanding in his field. This is the only line he wanted in his obituary. But, seeing as he passed on his stubborn gene, we are going to ignore his suggestion. Bob Zeeb was a farmer, but he was so much more than that. Bob met the love of his life, Virginia (Ginny) Hardtke at 4-H camp. They were paired up for a scavenger hunt. When the list called for “a hair from a horse’s tail” the competitors dashed to the field, chasing the horses in circles. Ginny just shook her head, walked straight over to the fence and plucked a horse hair that had caught on the rail—right then Bob knew she was the girl for him. And although he was grateful that his future father-in-law, Herb, allowed him to date his daughter (despite being four years his junior) it did make him doubt Herb’s judgement. Bob’s talents were many. He had the uncanny ability to divine water; a feat witnessed by many over the years. Go ahead, ask around. His witching sticks are probably the only possession his kids will squabble over. His quest to find water and rid his fields of it was borderline obsessive. Nobody knows how he acquired this skill, possibly as an Eagle Scout or maybe during his service in Korea. It’s a mystery. He also had excellent boating skills. He once managed to get six water-skiers up behind his boat on Houghton Lake—a proud spin around the lake ensued. He took pleasure in scaring first time passengers by driving full throttle directly toward the boat lift before cutting the motor at the last second—and drifting in perfectly. Bob was a bit of a style icon. He could always be spotted around town sporting overalls, a Bath Bees jacket and a John Deere hat. Or sometimes, a John Deere jacket with a Bath Bees hat. He liked to mix it up. He was a Bath Bee through and through: graduate, school board President and athletic booster. He fondly remembered the long, hot summer of 1979 when he and other booster parents built the BHS football field and played the first game under the lights. Complete with a keg on the 50-yard line. From pickle loaf sandwiches to salted ketchup and butter on a spoon—Bob was a real foodie. He never allowed cucumbers to grace his table. Ever. Or salad forks, he had a thing against tiny forks. His beverage of choice was the chocolate malt and he never forgave Shedds for discontinuing his favorite Old Style Sauce. He even has an entree named after him: The Grandpa Bob Sandwich. White bread, peanut butter (crunchy or smooth, he wasn’t fussy after all) and brown sugar. Delicious. As DeWitt Township Supervisor, he soothed concerned citizens that had complaints of overdevelopment, underdevelopment, noise, neighbors, roads, and so forth and so on. He frequently gave the sage advice that “if they enjoyed their view, they should buy it before someone else does.” He followed his own advice and surrounded himself with a thousand acres. Bob traveled extensively with friends, family and his beloved Kellogg group, to destinations both near and far including Europe, Asia, and South America. He enjoyed all of the various countries he visited but thought he might enjoy them more with if there were “less foreigners.” He was joking of course, sort of. His children Pat, Chris, Mike and Karen are grateful for his attendance at every single one of their athletic events, teaching them to drive at a tender age, giving them the opportunity to “build character”, and the investment advice to buy dirt because “they aren’t making any more of it.” Everyone who knew Bob, thought he was a hard worker. But truth be told, Bob Zeeb never worked a day in his life. He believed in the adage that if you could find a way to make a living doing what you loved, you’d be on vacation 365 days a year. And that was Bob; doing exactly what he wanted to do, every day. His way. A man who’d rather farm than fish. He was on vacation virtually every day of his adult life. The other days he fished. There will not be a visitation or a funeral as Bob found them depressing. He would allow for a celebration at the farm sometime between planting and harvest because, well, farming. Please join us on 23 June from 1:00-4:00 at 3200 Herbison Road, Bath. Bring a photo, a memory or story to share of Bob, but no flowers. Wear your boots; we’ll be in the barn. Contributions can be made in Bob’s honor to Bath Athletic Boosters C/O Alicia Paape P.O. Box 203 Bath, MI 48808.


  • Bath Athletic Boosters


  • Celebration Saturday, June 23, 2018

Robert Douglas Zeeb

have a memory or condolence to add?

Marlaine Teahan

April 22, 2018

Dear Zeeb Family:
I'm so glad you went beyond that fabulous one-line obituary that Bob designed. What great information about Bob and his life. Some of it I had heard but most of it was new, so it was wonderful to read. Loved the story about Ginny knowing where to find the horse hair and how Bob never worked a day in his life. What wonderful memories you all must have. Blessings, peace and comfort to you all. Marlaine

Alice Jean & Wayne Loomis

April 17, 2018

Just saw that Bob passed away, so sorry to here of your loss, I've know him for many years and he was a very good man and special friend, he sure will be missed hope Ginny can handle his loss, take care with Love and Prayers, Sincerely Alice Jean and Wayne Loomis