Bernard Eugene Bobbett, 93, El Dorado Springs, departed this life in his home surrounded by his loving wife and family on June 28, 2023. Bernard was born Nov. 27, 1929, in Sheldon, to Fred and Opal (Bogart) Bobbett. Bernard had one sister, Blanche, and four brothers: Buford, Buell, Benton, and Billy Joe. His parents and all his siblings preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by one grandson, Ethan Bobbett.

Bernard was united in marriage to Velma Fay Scott on July 1, 1949, in Reverend Elliott’s home in Nevada, MO. Bernard and Velma would have celebrated their 74th Wedding Anniversary on July 1st this year.

Bernard started work at a very young age working part time at his Uncle Frank’s dairy and part time at a service station, pumping gas and washing windshields. Bernard was unable to finish high school due to a serious eye injury. In 1947 he worked for Norton’s in Nevada. After their marriage Bernard and Velma moved to Wichita, KS, in 1950, and Bernard found work at the Sutton Factory. In 1953 they moved back to El Dorado Springs, where Bernard worked for the Highway Department until he purchased his first milk route.

When Bernard bought his first “can route,” the company he was going to haul for questioned whether Bernard would be able to handle the heavy milk cans, but he managed to figure how to load the full milk cans by swinging them between his legs and swinging them up into the truck. They soon learned he was more than capable of doing the job. Bernard made a career of hauling raw milk from the dairy farms to the milk processing plants in El Dorado Springs and Springfield, and sometimes to Cabool or even Springdale, AR. He ended up owning three routes and four bulk milk trucks when he finally retired in 1994 after hauling milk for over 40 years.

In addition to working from well before daylight driving and until midnight or after doing all the maintenance on his trucks, Bernard found time to be the ultimate family man. He somehow found time to take his three children: Katherine, Randy, and Mickey and many of their friends water skiing, camping, and many other fun things. Bernard also helped build and drive stock cars in the late 50s and 60s winning many trophies which are still on display around the house.

During his time as a milk hauler, he bought two farms and raised beef cattle on the side. Bernard was an accomplished welder fabricator, a good mechanic, and pretty much a “Jack of all trades,” building two homes, helping his son build his house, and also building many outbuildings in his time.  Bernard and Velma still insisted on cutting and splitting their own firewood as late as last fall. Bernard and Velma were avid fans of stock car racing and held season tickets for many years at the Wheatland Lucas Oil Speedway. He was also a lover of old country music and often went to hear his favorite singer, Ginelle, wherever she was singing.  He took a great deal of pride in keeping all his property in pristine condition!

Bernard loved and enjoyed his grandchildren as much as any man could, going to ballgames and any other activity that one of the grandkids was involved in. He and Velma were always there to cheer them on, and all his grandkids adored him! Bernard lived his life setting an example of a life well live. He leaves a legacy that we should all aspire to and try to live up to.

Survivors include his wife, Velma Bobbett; three children: Katherine and husband, Monty Russell, of Springfield, Randy and wife, Jerry, of El Dorado Springs, and Mickey of Joplin; eight grandchildren: Brandon Russell, Joe Robison and wife, Kayla, Shawn Russell, Heather and husband, Brandon Gilliland, Kylie and husband, Logan Wyatt, Levi Bobbett, Zach Bobbett, and Luke Bobbett; nine great-grandchildren: Makena, Braelynn, Maddix, Mylie, Zora, Tristan, Graham, Houston, and Vivienne.

We all feel an emptiness which will never be completely filled, but as we relive our precious memories of Bernard, they will no doubt bring us comfort and joy, and his legacy will live on through his children and grandchildren.

Services for Bernard Bobbett will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 8, at the El Dorado Springs Church of God (Holiness) with Rev. Brent Bland officiating. A visitation will be held at the church beginning at 9 a.m. Interment will follow at the El Dorado Springs City Cemetery under the direction of Bland-Hackleman Funeral Home.

Pallbearers will be Brandon Gilliland, Brandon Russell, Lexi Bobbett, Zach Bobbett, Luke Bobbett, Joe Robison, Shawn Russell, and Logan Wyatt. Honorary pallbearers will be Leon Steward, Gary Charles, Ed Arnett, DeVere Bobbett, Dick Mogan, and Ethan Bobbett.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Land o’ Lakes Youth Fair and left at the funeral home.

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