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Obituary for Robert Esken

Robert W. Esken, 94

UPLAND, CA – Robert William Esken, of Upland, California, formerly of East Liverpool, passed away September 7, 2018 in Pomona, California. He was 94.

Born in East Liverpool, August 26, 1924, he worked as an advertising agent in the newspaper business for many years. Although Bob was a life-long Lutheran, he dutifully kept his written promise to raise their two children Catholic, supported them through Catholic school, and made sure, along with wife Dorothy, that the children attended weekly Mass. Bob was as Catholic as one could get without joining the Church.

Bob enlisted in the Army right out of high school in 1942. Fought in the South Pacific Theater of
Operations until the Japanese surrender in 1945, when he was honorably discharged. Like most other WWII veterans, Bob did not talk about his experiences in the war, and just felt it was his duty to serve. After the Army, Bob returned home to East Liverpool and studied for two years at Ohio Valley Business College, where he received is AA degree in Business marketing. He worked in the newspaper business his entire career as a retail advertising salesman and manager. Bob worked as a display advertising salesman for the EL Review until moving to California.

In 1959, Bob moved his family to Garden Grove, California. He was the first of the Esken family to move out of Ohio, much to Dorothy's chagrin, and stayed in California the rest of his life, retiring from the newspaper advertising business at age 65. After retiring, Bob and the family moved to Upland, where they peacefully lived the rest of their lives. Daughter Rosemary remained the "in home" caregiver for both Dorothy and Bob until their passing.

Growing up in the Great Depression, Bob was a member of the "Greatest Generation", espousing traditional, conservative Christian values; values that shaped America during the 30's, 40's and 50's until those values began eroding in the 60's. Bob seldom complained about life; silently carrying his crosses like so many others of his generation. Living life under the banner "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you". And setting an excellent example for others, especially his children, by the way he lived his life.

He had a focus on Heaven for so many years, and often talked about the "End Times". He had seen so many changes in the world during his life that he believed the "signs" were manifesting, and that Jesus's 2nd coming was near. He doesn’t have to hope for Jesus' return anymore; he is with Jesus now.

In 2013 he was preceded in death by his wife of 65 years, Dorothy J. Esken.

Survivors include a son, William Esken (wife Khiem) of California and a daughter, Rosemary Esken of California, as well as grandchildren Clint Esken (wife Erin) and Blake Esken (wife Maggie); and great-grandchildren Brayden Esken and Kayla Esken, all of California.

The Rev. Eric M. Edwards of St. John Lutheran Church will conduct a graveside service at Columbiana County Memorial Park Saturday, October 13th at 11:00 a.m. The Dawson Funeral Home has assisted with funeral arrangements.


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