Bob Stemple, Popular Retired School Superintendent and Lifelong Educator, Dies at 78

By Connect Clarksburg Staff | February 13, 2019
Robert M. Stemple, 78, of Clarksburg, WV went to rest in eternal peace with the Lord on Tuesday, February 12, 2019.
He was born in Webster Springs, WV on November 21, 1940, son of the late Fritz Stemple and the late Elizabeth Wilber Stemple.
He was the loving husband of Ionia Urtso Stemple and father to Kristy Stemple Skerbetz (husband, Eddie Skerbetz) of McDonald, PA, John Robert Stemple (wife, Heather Hoffman Stemple) of Loveland, OH, and James (Jimmy) Richard Stemple (wife, Nicky Ayers Stemple) of Bridgeport, WV. He is also survived by seven grandchildren, Hunter Stemple, Hayden Stemple, Maya Stemple, Aaron Skerbetz, Brett Skerbetz, Ian Stemple and Evan Stemple; his identical twin brother, Richard Stemple and his wife Elizabeth (Liz) of Phoenix, AZ; his sister-in-law, Jane Yolen of Hatfield, MA; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his other brothers, David Stemple and William (Bill) Stemple, and sister-in-law Dorothy (Dotty) Stemple.
Robert was a graduate of Fairmont State College with a BA in Elementary Education and West Virginia University with a MA in Elementary Education Administration. He spent most of his life working in education as a teacher, principal, Assistant Superintendent and Superintendent of Harrison County Schools. He also was a math instructor and Director of Fairmont State College Clarksburg Center. After retirement from the school system, Robert worked for Comvest Ltd.
Robert was instrumental in getting school levies passed, and was most proud of his tireless effort in coordinating the preparation and passage of the only school bond issue to pass in the board’s history. He was proud to take part in raising millions of dollars for Harrison County schools to benefit the teachers, students, and parents. He served as a member on the West Virginia Association of School Administrators and the West Virginia Association of School Business Officials where he ran their golf tournaments; and as the President of West Virginia Elementary Principals’ Association. He was active in community endeavors such as serving as the President of the Harrison County YMCA Board of Directors, Chairman and Member of Clarksburg Public Library, Cabinet Member of Harrison County United Way, Member of United Hospital Center Planning Committee, and most recently as a volunteer at the Veterans’ Hospital. In addition, Robert enjoyed volunteering his time and talents at his church, Immaculate Conception, as a cantor, a member of the bell choir, and part of the cleaning crew.
Robert enjoyed sports and physical fitness activities his entire life, especially running, skiing, golfing and playing tennis. At Fairmont State College, he played on the men’s tennis team. He was a tennis professional at Clarksburg Country Club, and taught countless adults and children through private lessons throughout the county. He was a past tennis coach for RCB boys’ and girls’ teams. He was an active member of Clarksburg Country Club. He has inspired a love of running, exercise, and sports in his children and grandchildren. He was a supporter and fan of all West Virginia University Mountaineer teams.
Robert was also musically talented. He played drums in high school and in the West Virginia University Marching Band. He also enjoyed participating in the theater where he sang, acted, and directed plays and musicals. He also volunteered his time as an adult to assist local school theater programs. He and his wife Ionia enjoying performing together for many years with StageCrafters. He had a passion for life and a contagious positive spirit. He was a master story and joke teller and an amazing public speaker. He was a gifted mediator and problem solver. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends and all who knew and loved him.
Friends and family may call at Amos Carvelli Funeral Home, 201 Edison Street, Nutter Fort, on Friday, February 15 from 2:00 to 8:00 pm where a prayer service will be held at 7:30 pm to conclude the visitation.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, February 16, 2019 at 10:00 am at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 126 East Pike Street, Clarksburg with Father Casey Mahone as Celebrant. Interment will follow in the Holy Cross Cemetery.

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