Robert W. Heald

January 5, 1929December 28, 2019

Robert W. Heald, 90, of Marlborough, died peacefully at his home on Saturday, December 28, 2019. He was born on January 5, 1929, in Walpole, the son of the late Earl and Elizabeth Heald. A long-time resident of Keene, Bob attended the Keene Elementary School system and graduated from Keene High School in the class of 1946 where he took pride as a tuba player in the school band. After completing two years at prep school in Tilton, New Hampshire, he enrolled at the University of New Hampshire where he majored in Economics and played in the band. Upon graduation from UNH in 1952, Bob was immediately drafted into the U. S. Army. Bob was stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky for 2 years where he attended Officer Candidate School and was commissioned a second lieutenant. On being relived from active duty, he joined the army reserves where he became Personnel Director and Instructor at the 1034th army reserve training school in Manchester. Here he was awarded an Army Commendation Medal and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel after 35 years of service. Bob will be remembered for his work at the Heald Brothers’ Ice Creamery in West Keene and for serving as the Grand Marshal of the Keene Memorial Day Parade for almost 50 years. For many years, Bob ran an insurance agency at his home on High Street in Keene dealing with Property and Liability insurance. He was a Senior Member of the Keene Historical Society, the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, the New Hampshire Veterans Association, the National Sojourners, the Reserve Officers Association, the Military Officers Association of America, and was a 60 year Member of Post #4 Keene American Legion. He will be missed by his many friends at Jerusalem Masonic Lodge #104 in Keene where he served as its Treasurer for 52 years and awarded the Major General John Sullivan Distinguished Service Award and made an Honorary Past Worshipful Master. He also served in the office of Grand Steward in the Grand Lodge of New Hampshire. He was also a Scottish Rite Mason where he received the Meritorious Service Award and coroneted a 33rd degree Mason in 1982, the highest level degree in Masonry. He was an active member of the Rotary Club of Keene for many years and served as its president in 1983 and 1984. Here he was awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship Award, the highest award given by the Rotary Club. He also performed his civic duties as chairman of the Marlborough Zoning Board from 1987 to 2003. He was extremely meticulous in his duties and became a teacher and mentor to all. He is survived by his cousin, Jane Heald, of Keene and was pre-deceased by his parents Earl and Elizabeth Heald. In keeping with Bob’s wishes there will be a Masonic service open to all at the Foley Funeral Home, 49 Court St., Keene, on Monday, January 6th at 11:00am conducted by members of Jerusalem Masonic Lodge #104. This service will be followed by a full Military Service at the Woodland Cemetery in Keene. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bob’s memory to an organization of your choice. The Foley Funeral Home is assisting the family with these arrangements. Please visit to leave an online remembrance.


  • Fellowship Following Funeral Service

    Monday, January 6, 2020

  • Burial with Military Honors

    Monday, January 6, 2020


Robert W. Heald

have a memory or condolence to add?

Jacquelyn Johnston, PNP

December 28, 2020

I believe it was a New England Regional meeting or it may have been a Department Encampment that was held in Waterville, ME. I didn't want to go alone and Robert didn't want to drive there. So we made an arrangement to go together.

Robert drove to my house in Amherst, NH, and left his car. I drove with him to the meeting. We had a great time and talking in the car, we had a lot of similar family memories with the Allied Orders. I knew Cleon Heald very well as I grew up going everywhere with Mom and Dad throughout New Hampshire, all New England States, and many, many National Encampments throughout the country.

In 1974 my mother was the force behind getting the National Encampment to the Mount Washington Hotel in the White Mountains. My mother said she would handle everything. At that time we only had one Past Commander in Chief in NH. Cleon told my mother, do whatever you want and if you need my help to get something out of National, just tell me and I'll get it done. We both talked about that on the trip.

I will keep that as a cherished memory of Bob Heald. My mother was also a musical talent and we talked a lot about music as he too was a talented musician.

I will carry these warm memories in my heart until the day I join him in the hereafter.

May God bless his family and may you have endless memories to keep happy thoughts in your heart too.

Jacquelyn W. Johnston, Past National President
Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Jacquelyn Johnston

January 10, 2020

Since I am now 76 years old, I cannot remember exactly if I have the correct Heald, but I believe that he and I became acquainted through the SUVCW at a Department Encampment. My parents Ken and Emma Wheeler were a Past Commander in Chief and a Past National President of the Sons and Auxiliary. Through them I was very friendly with Cleon Heald, his wife and family. In 1974 when my parents brought the National Encampment to the Mount Washington Hotel in the White Mountains, there were no Past Commanders in Chief in New Hampshire except for Cleon. My mother asked if he would be willing to head the committee as a PCinC was needed. Cleon had a good sense of humor and he told her, I'll do that as long as you do all the work. If you need any help with National, just tell me and I'll take care of it. That Encampment was very successful.

I believe sometime in the 1990s Robert asked if he could ride with me to a function in Maine. At that time I was in my 50's and was still driving at night and going places. As I recall we had a wonderful ride up and back. He left his car in my yard in Amherst, NH.

I know that he was very into music (as was my mother) and I thoroughly enjoyed my interactions with him.

My heartfelt sympathy goes out to his family and friends during this time of mourning. He was truly a wonderful man!

Jacquelyn (Jackie) Wheeler Johnston, Past National President 1997-1998. Emma Wheeler died 2000, Past National President 1964-1965. Kenneth T. Wheeler, Sr. died 2002, Past Commander in Chief 1976-1977

Christine Zelazny

January 6, 2020

I will remember Bob as a friendly face in the neighborhood on High Street. We had some wonderful conversations over the sixteen years since I moved next door ( a home once belonging to his Aunt and Uncle ) to his family home. He was always willing to help people in the neighborhood, including myself, in any way he could. I enjoyed his stories about his family history and the history of Keene. His heart was big. He went visited his Mother every day at the nursing home until her death and took care of the needs of his cousin as well. I admired the fact that he took such good care of their house on High Street, wanting them to know , he told me, that they could come home if they were able.

William Sherwin

January 3, 2020

Happy Memories of Early Days on High Street==
RIP Bobbie