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Robert Verdehem

Robert A Verdehem

Sunday, November 10th, 1935 - Thursday, June 4th, 2020
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Obituary

Robert A. Verdehem

GENEVA- Robert A. Verdehem, age 84, of Geneva passed away peacefully at home on June 4, 2020 surrounded by his loving family, after a short and courageous battle with cancer.

There will be no prior calling hours due to the limitation on gatherings as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. A memorial service will be scheduled in Geneva, at a later date at a time and location to be announced by the McGuigan & Bero Funeral Home. Burial will be in Resthaven Cemetery in Phelps, NY.

Memorial contributions can be made to the American Legon Winnek Post 396 in Geneva, and the Ontario County Humane Society.

Bob was born on November 10, 1935 in Phelps, NY. He was the only son out of eight children born to Peter and Mary Verdehem of Phelps. He attended and graduated from the Phelps school district. Bob went on to serve his country proudly in the US Navy as a Combat Aircrewman during the Korean War. After the war ended, Bob continued to serve his nation in the US Navy in the Pacific theater, with lengthy deployments on Guam, Okinawa, Japan and San Diego, CA. Serving his country was one of Bob’s proudest achievements in life.

After an honorable discharge from the US Navy, Bob returned to the Geneva area and he joined the Geneva Police Department as a Patrolman in 1960. Bob’s duties on the Police force included motorcycle patrols. He would often lead the parades in Geneva on the police motorcycle. He was the Geneva Police Department’s head firearms instructor and armor for many years during his tenure with the department. In 1972, Bob was awarded the Medal of Honor by the Finger Lakes Law Enforcement Agency, for multiple injuries that he suffered during the heroic action of saving the life of a knife wielding, mentally ill man, from a burning building in the City of Geneva. He was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 1975. Bob was honored by the New York Moose Club as their Police Officer of the Year in 1980. He retired from the Geneva Police Department in 1985, after 25 years of dedicated service to the citizens of Geneva. After retiring from the Police Department, Bob continued to serve his beloved nation by working security and other jobs at the Seneca Army Depot for the US Department of Defense.

Bob was an active member of the Winnek Post 396 American Legion in Geneva. He was a life member of the Geneva Fire Department, Hook and Ladder Company, where he actively marched in the areas fireman’s parades, until the final year of his life.

Bob enjoyed hunting and fishing, but his true passion was riding motorcycle with family and friends. Over the years, he traveled much of North America by motorcycle, and he was an active member of the Finger Lakes BMW Motorcycle Club, and The Blue Knights Motorcycle club. He had countless friends throughout the Finger Lakes area, and within the nation’s motorcycling community. He touched the hearts and lives of many in positive ways during his adventurous life, always there to lend a hand to a friend in need. He will be missed dearly by his loving family and friends.

He is survived by his sisters Arlene Murphy of Rochester and Shirley Caves of Reading, PA, his children; Brenda Verdehem of Geneva, Bob (Sandy) Verdehem of Bellona, Peter (Deb) Verdehem of Phelps, Brian (Jennifer) Verdehem of Sugar Land, Texas, and Lynn (Tom) Perkovich of Tonawanda, NY; Grandchildren Tom (Brandi) Perkovich, Erica (Anthony) Nesbit, Chris (Chelsie) Verdehem, Erik Verdehem, Scott Verdehem, Alex Verdehem, Joshua Verdehem, Nicholas Verdehem, and Ella Verdehem. Additionally, he leaves behind five great grandchildren, his special friend Joyce Lorsong, and his dog Bailey.

Bob was predeceased by his parents, and his sisters; Marcia VerStraete, Carolyn Gawlik, Virginia Pasarek, Rose Adams, and Lillian Wilson.

The Verdehem family would like to thank the University of Rochester Medicine Homecare Hospice, and private nursing aides, for the comfort and care that they provided Bob during his brief illness.
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Service Details

  • Interment

    Location
    Resthaven Cemetery
    Address
    6 Clearview Drive
    PHELPS, NY 14532
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

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Fellow Officers of ARPALER

Posted at 08:07pm
The Association of Rochester Police and Area Law Enforcement Retirees (ARPALER) sends prayers and condolences to the family of Sgt. Verdehem, and we salute him for his service to his country and community. Rest in peace Brother.
P

Patti Manino

Posted at 08:29am
So sorry for your loss. He was a great man.
FR

Fay Russell

Posted at 06:45pm
Sympathy for all of us. We have lost a good man. He was a great father/grandfather and one one of the best friend anyone could ask for. He will be sorrowfully missed. His sisters and I used bedevil him back our early lives. Finding his hiding spot in the barn, he was great at building tunnels and caves in the hay loft. He found out about home brew one hot summer day, never really heard how mad his Mom was. Us girls tried to clean up his trail of you know what and got a pail next to his bed. Oh did that house smell! He was a heller on wheels as a teenager but always did his chores. He was Pete's (his Dad) best worker. He also got his charm from his Dad who was a hard working, charming man. My only regret is not knowing he was sick, I would have liked to have been able to say Good-bye and love you, Bob. R.I.P. Will see later. Fay Russell
HR

Helen Roberts

Posted at 10:20am
Brenda, Jean and family: My mother Gloria Wezler and I are keeping you all in our prayers. Bob was a very nice man. He will be missed. Please let us know if you need anything.
Helen Roberts
N

Nancy Coluzzi

Posted at 08:38am
Bob and family, I'm so sorry for your loss. Your dad was such a nice man. I still remember when I was 14, him giving me his caring fatherly advice about boys. Seeing you all together on Sunday mornings at Waterstreet was always a nice. RIP Mr. Verdehem.
Nancy Coluzzi
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