Robert J. “Bob” Sommer, 96, of Nampa, passed away into eternal life on April 8, 2020. Bob was born on January 31, 1924 in Cottonwood, Idaho to Casper and Monica Sommer. From there they moved to Wendell, Idaho and then Meridian where his father practiced veterinary medicine and had a small dairy farm. After graduation from Meridian High School, Bob met the love of his life Lola Strang. They were married in St. Pauls Catholic Church on May 24, 1945 to be married 75 years. To this union there came 11 children. Bob was a man of strong work ethics and worked 2-3 jobs to provide for his family. It has always been said that his family never lacked for what is essential (and at our wonderful Christmas's something special and fun!). Bob grew up in a home of faith and lived a life of faith. He was a member of St. Pauls Catholic Church and could be counted on to help wherever needed. He was a member of St. Pauls Knights of Columbus having achieved the highest rank of Grand Knight where he was especially proud to induct new members.
Bob began his construction career by buying an Army surplus dump truck. He joined his father in law Charles Strang at Strang Sand and Gravel and later C.L, Strang Excavating. In 1965, Bob and Lola purchased the company from her parents which then became Sommer Construction Inc. Bob was well known in the valley for his work with home builders and later on Public Works projects.
Bob and Lola enjoyed travelling. They went to Europe twice, Australia, Alaska and Hawaii but what they loved most was travelling the United States in their converted Trailways bus spending most winters in Arizona. Bob and Lola spent a few years of their "retired" life in Bridgeport California working for Bob’s brother Leo who managed the ranching operations for the John Asquaga Cattle Co. Dad always said those were some of his best years.
Once they completely retired mom and dad spent most of their time with their bus parked in Cascade where they had purchased property in the early 70's. Several family members have purchased properties adjacent to them over the years forming the "Sommer Compound". Many family gatherings and events took place there and continue to this day. Dad's life is hard to sum up in a few words, but he showed us love and respect for one another and being an example to those around you.
Bob is survived by his wife of 75 years, Lola; daughters Janice Yager (Steve), Sharon Simmons (John), Barbara Thompson (Rick), Maralyn and Teresa Sommer; sons Steve (Nancy), Dave (Sherrie), Rob (Pam), and Lee (Kathy); His brother Leo and four sisters Chris Klotz, Irene Bridges, Rita Elliott and Dorothy Giffen; along with many grandchildren and great grandchildren who he loved dearly.
He was preceded in death by two sons Lawrence and Jeffry, his brother Cap and sisters Mary Sommer and Wilma Sprute.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 12:00 Noon on Wednesday, April 15, 2020 at the St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Nampa. Due to our current restrictions, only immediate family is invited to the church for services. However, a public streaming is available through the St. Paul's website at nampacatholic.church and follow the links to watching the mass. Burial will follow in the Mount Calvary Cemetery, Nampa. Arrangements are under the direction of the Nampa Funeral Home, Yraguen Chapel where an online guest book is available at www.nampafuneralhome.com
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