Obituary of Robert Markley (1926 – 2022) – Greeley, CO

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Robert “Bob” Harold Markley passed away on January 3, 2022. He was 95 years old. What a life he lived and what an incredible legacy he left! Bob was born in Fort. Morgan on November 27, 1926 to Ferd and Elsie Markley. His extended family lived in Weldona until 1936, when his father bought a Dodge dealership and founded Markley Motors, moving the immediate family to Fort. Collins. Bob attended school in Laurel and Lincoln; he graduated from Fort. Collins High School in 1944 where he was a wrestler, track runner and enjoyed singing high tenor and baritone in the school choir. In 1944, during World War II, Bob joined the United States Coast Guard. During his service, he took a theoretical and practical course in radio operations. He returned home in 1946 and attended Colorado A&M (CSU) where, after four years at ROTC, he received a commission in the field artillery as a second lieutenant. He was an active member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and graduated in Business Economics in 1950. His 1948 marriage to Lucille Rutt punctuated his college years. They had two sons, Dave and Dan, and a daughter, Carol. They later divorced; she preceded him. After graduation, Bob became a junior partner with his brother, Gene, and his father, in the Markley family car dealership. The company expanded in 1959 to include a Chrysler-Plymouth dealership. Bob has always loved the automotive industry and was very proud to have carried on the traditions established by his father in 1936. From his early years of sweeping floors, washing and polishing cars, clearing vehicles and even trains to Detroit to bring back the flying cars. Collins dealer Bob has learned and truly enjoyed every facet of the business. Gene and Bob continued in partnership until 1968, when Bob moved his wife “Lucy” and her family, to Greeley to open a VW dealership. This dealership then expanded to sell Mercedes, Honda, Saab, Mazda and Isuzu. In 1982, he married Sandy Mason, who brought three daughters (Judy, Jenny and Melissa) to the family. Sandy was predeceased by him. Bob’s heart and civic goals have always been focused on giving back, which he has done for many years investing his time, resources, expertise and dedication in the towns of Fort. Collins and Greeley. He was a member of both the Ft. Collins and the Greeley Lions Club (has served as president of both); founder and president of the Ft. Collins Campaign Club; helped establish Fort’s first United Way. Collins; Director of the Board of Directors of Poudre Valley National Bank, Chairman of Better Schools for Ft. Collins; President of the Greeley Chamber of Commerce; member of the board of directors of United Bank of Greeley; member of the board of directors of the Salvation Army; President of the Greeley Auto Dealers Association and was Mayor of Greeley for two terms (1985-1990). While mayor, Bob played a central role in the development and construction of the Union Colony Civic Center. A plaque on the building recognizes his leadership in the project. A full list of Bob’s dedicated civic duties can be found on the Allnutt Mortuary website. During his long and rich life, Bob received many awards. His highest professional honor was receiving Time Magazine’s National Automobile Quality Dealer Award for the State of Colorado in 1990; he was one of the five finalists for the national award. This award was presented to dealers for their outstanding performance and distinguished community service. In September 2021, he was first inducted into the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association Hall of Fame, where he received a standing ovation. Bob was truly honored and humbled. Bob has lived a busy life. He was currently active with The Old Man’s Coffee Group and the Greeley Lions Club. He stayed “tuned” to sports in the state of Colorado and the Rockies. He enjoyed his trips to Mexico, deep sea fishing, vacations and exploring Lake Powell immensely, being an avid fisherman, adequate golfer, intermediate skier, music lover (especially the elders) and sharing a good glass of scotch. He believed he was competitive in many things, but master of none. Over the past eight years, his life has been blessed and enriched by the loyal and loving company of his dear friend, General Holloway. Always kind and available, always loving and genuine, Bob was a wonderful patriarch to a large family. Those who survived him: sons David (Diane) Markley and Dan (Deb) Markley, all of Greeley; daughter Carol (Brian) Zick of Ft. Collins. He also leaves his grandchildren Mark (Katie) Markley, Mitchell (Lindsey) Markley, Misty (Chris) Frey, Amanda (Taylor) Stevens, Sarah (Bob) Kay and Scott Zick and nine great grandchildren. He is also survived by his stepchildren: Judy (Mike) Finn of Greeley, Jenny (Mike) Dahman of Highlands Ranch and Melissa Horvat of Santa Monica, California. as well as three step-grandchildren: Mike and Mason Dahman, and Megan (Drew) Roper. Bob is also predeceased by his parents, Ferd and Elsie; sister, Virginia; beloved brother, Gene. A memorial service will be held on Friday, January 14, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. at Macy Chapel: Allnutt Funeral Home, 6521 West 20th Street, Greeley, Colorado. A reception will follow immediately. The family would be grateful if any commemorative contributions in honor of Bob be directed to: Greeley Noon Lions Club or The Salvation Army (specify Greeley Red Kettle). Both can be mailed to 1119 6th Street, Greeley, Colorado 80631.

Posted by Greeley Tribune on January 9, 2022.


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