Robert ‘Bob’ Bergman
Robert ‘Bob’ Bergman
Robert “Bob” Bergman died at his home in Sonoma on June 20, 2012, after a seven-month battle with cancer. He died peacefully with his family, those he loved most, around him.
Bob was born in San Francisco on Dec. 17, 1934, to Mella Dwyer Bergman and Robert Bergman. When he was 7, he and his brother, Bruce, moved to Fairfield. He grew up on a sheep ranch raised by his great-uncle and aunt, Jackie and Hans Lambrecht. Bob graduated from Armijo High School in Fairfield where he excelled in sports and was voted most athletic in his senior year. He lettered in football, basketball, baseball and track, was a member of FFA and also class president. After high school, he attended Santa Rosa Junior College, where he had a very successful football career. He then transferred to San Jose State College where he played soccer and graduated with a teaching credential. He also played with a semi-pro soccer team while at San Jose and after moving to Sonoma.
Bob met his wife-to-be, Linda, at San Jose State. Bob was hired as a teacher and varsity basketball coach at Sonoma Valley High School in the fall of 1961 and he and Linda were married shortly after. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Thanksgiving Day last year. They had two wonderful children. Bob was a great father and considered the all-American dad by his son, Robin, and daughter, Lauri.
Sports have always been a big part of Bob’s life. He loved coaching basketball, being in the gym and working with the kids. He had a very successful career coaching varsity basketball for 20 years and led the team to several Sonoma County League championships. His last two years of coaching were a highlight when he coached his son, Robin, and the team was undefeated in league play winning the league championship one of those years. He retired from coaching basketball after 20 years, but coached several other sports after that including badminton, soccer, girls basketball and girls volleyball. He retired from teaching in 1995 after 34 years.
After so many years teaching and coaching it seemed like he knew just about everybody in Sonoma. No matter where he went there was always a former student saying “Hi coach!” and recalling the many summers of three-on-three basketball and table tennis games they played in the gym and the Dragon’s Pit Pepsi they owed the coach when they lost. Many students told him over the years that he was the father figure that they were missing in their lives. He was a very honorable and respected man who touched the lives of many students and athletes. He will be missed.
In addition to his coaching and teaching career, Bob and his wife began raising cattle more than 40 years ago. Over time they developed a herd of registered Angus and Limousin cattle. They have shown the cattle at the Sonoma County Fair, California State Fair, Cow Palace and the Western Livestock Show in Denver and have sold their registered bulls at the Cal Poly bull test and other bull sales in California. The ranch name, Valley of the Moon Livestock, is associated with quality animals and Bob has a collection of belt buckles, vests and banners to attest to the success of the animals he raised. He enjoyed spending time outdoors with the cattle, riding the ATV around the pastures and watching new calves being born.
In later years, Bob added tennis to the list of sports he enjoyed playing. He played several times a week and very much enjoyed the camaraderie and friendly competition with his group of tennis friends.
Bob is survived by his wife, Linda; son, Robin, of Las Vegas; daughter, Lauri Lawson and son-in-law, Mike Lawson, of Citrus Heights; brother, Bruce Bergman and sister-in-law, Andrea, of Cloverdale; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Bev and Ron Rosenfeld, of Salem, Ore.; nephew, Craig Bergman, of Pleasanton; and niece, Dana Hurt, of Lake Tahoe.
At Bob’s request no services will be held. Donations in his memory may be made to Operation Smile at www.operationsmile.org; or Hospice By The Bay, 190 W. Napa St., Sonoma, CA 95476.
Arrangements under the direction of Duggan’s Mission Chapel and Mission Cremation Service; inquiries can be made to them at 996-3655 or at www.duggansmissionchapel.com
Duggan’s Mission Chapel.
Mission Cremation Service
525 W. Napa St.
Sonoma, CA 95476