In Memory

Robert Townsend

Robert Townsend

Robert Hardie-Townsend, 55, passed away suddenly on Saturday, July 31, 2010, at his Claremont home with his wife, Sandy, by his side.

Robert was born on January 15, 1955, in Los Angeles, California.  He attended schools in South Pasadena and earned a bachelor of arts degree and a master of arts degree from Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California.  He obtained a Certified Property Manager (CPM) designation from the Institute of Real Estate Management and a real estate broker license from the State of California.  He lived and worked in the Seattle, Washington area before returning to Southern California.

Robert had a successful career in property management and real estate banking.  Robert deeply connected with those who entered his life.  An intuitive man, he had keen insight into others.  He was a person of deep faith, which sustained him through his life.  Family, friends, and co-workers felt that Robert was a man of his word who would never let them down.  His colleagues have praised him for his leadership and integrity.

Robert is survived by his wife, Sandy, and three children from a previous marriage to Mary Townsend:  daughter Sara Elizabeth Townsend, son Scott Robert Townsend, and stepson Brian Christopher Fritch.  He is also survived by sisters Margie (Lee) Porter '66, Jenny (John) Francis '68, and Ronni Skandilan '71, and his nieces and nephews, and incredible friends.

Robert loved being in the outdoors.  He married Sandy in June 2008 on a bluff overlooking the ocean in Cambria, a spot they returned to often.  He volunteered as a ranger in the Claremont Wilderness Park and could often be found riding his bike or hiking the trails in the surrounding mountains.  Family and friends are grieving this unexpected loss.  Robert will be deeply missed and remembered forever by those whose lives he touched.

A celebration of his life will be held Saturday, August 14, at 4 p.m. at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, 1500 N. College Ave., Claremont, Ca 91711 ( In lieu of flowers, remembrance donations may be made to Adopt-a-Dolphin, National Park Foundation, or Best Friends Animal Society.

Ventura County Star, August 8, 2010

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08/10/10 02:22 AM #1    

Cheryl Chapin (Petrovich)

 Bob was a nice guy. You just couldn't say anything bad about him! He was quick to smile his beautiful smile, and always had a kind word to offer to everyone. I didn't know him well, but I always knew he was one of the guys everyone respected and liked. He is gone too soon, but he will always be warmly remembered as an essential part of our lives at South Pasadena High School. I am saddened and feel so terrible. Much love and comfort to his family and friends who will miss him so very much. 

08/10/10 05:47 AM #2    

Lorraine Gutierrez

I attended school with Robert from 3rd grade (Marengo) on. The last time I saw him was at our reunion, when we sat at the same table. We were not good friends, but I always found him to be a kind and approachable person. I am sorry to hear that he has left us so soon, but it also looks as if he lived a full life and made a real difference for those around him.

08/10/10 06:39 AM #3    

Sam Osborne

Robert and I were good friends from Jr. High through High School at South Pasadena, we often skiied together and shared some really quality time as kids of that age did. In Jr. High we had a garage band with Dave Smith and Bob Grace, I can't remember the name, but we had a blast even though we sucked!  Robert was a great guy and could be depended on in a pinch. I have often thought of him through the years and know we will be reunited someday and what a day that will be! God bless you Robert and I miss you.

08/10/10 07:27 AM #4    

Donald Burnett

In SPHS days, I began to get involved in Young Life.  Bob Townsend's example of Christian leadership was an inspiration and source of direction to me.

Some years later, when assisting a Nigerian student with his ramp up for residential studies at Fuller Seminary, I was glad to run into Bob again when he was heading up housing at Fuller.  It was a joy to see how his calling in the Kingdom was being given expression.

08/10/10 09:21 AM #5    

Sharon Lucas

I didn't know Robert well during High School but the summer after High School when Pat Murphy was dying Robert was one of the few people that Pat allowed in to the small circle of friends he entrusted with his innermost thoughts. I have no doubt in my mind that Robert played a very large part in easing Pat's spiritual pain and creating a transition for him that I was so blessed to witness. I can only imagine that Robert continued his gift of friendship, wisdom and inspiration to so many more throughout his life and that Pat will be there to greet him on his transition. To his wife, family and friends I send my thoughts and prayers. Robert was a good man.

08/10/10 06:31 PM #6    

Jamie Stanley


I am so sorry to hear of Robert passing. I was just thinking back and remembering all  the great times Bob,Jim Burton ,Craig Tutor, and myself had while playing football together( that includes Crazy 80, Mike Simmonds,Jon Begero,Jim Patterson,Ed Knowles,Bob Peveani and the rest of the Tiger team) . I will always remember his spirit and laugh (which came out most when the going got tough), banging on the trash cans as drums for our Thursday after practice ritual, (remember that guys). Robert "Baby" Townsend, as we called him, the lead drummer. I remember the long talks we would have about backpacking,hiking and just enjoying nature before I moved to Oregon. I will always remember my friend Robert Townsend.  I would like to give my warmest regards to his family. I am definately a better person for having know and spent time with him.





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