Dr. Robert Allen Somerville
May 14, 1940 – October 19, 2017
Dr. Bob died at age 77 after sharing some final great stories with his family and the caring staff in North Island Hospital Campbell River & District.
Born and raised in Trail, BC, he was very proud of his Scottish heritage. Bob loved spending summers at the family cabin on Christina Lake. He graduated in 1965 from Pacific University’s School of Optometry in Forest Grove, Oregon, and then moved to Campbell River to set up a practice and start a family.
Bob retired in 2003 after practicing optometry in the community for over 37 years. During this time, Bob amassed an impressive collection of marine artifacts for his Maritime Museum, which was housed in his optometric office. On his retirement, the entirety of this collection was donated to the Campbell River Maritime Heritage Centre so that others could continue to learn about our rich nautical history on the coast.
Bob is perhaps best known in the community for his extraordinary years of extensive volunteer service in the field of land, sea, and air ‘Search & Rescue’, as well as his tireless ambition to upgrade safety on the BC coast. Through his dedicated efforts over the years, and often by putting his own life at risk, thousands of lives were saved. His adventures fueled a lifetime of stories that he enjoyed telling to his friends around the table at Steiner Bakery.
He was one of those remarkable individuals with an incredible variety of expertise, hobbies and interests that he explored over the years. To name just a few: helicopter rescue, free diving, scuba diving, mountaineering, radio communications, fencing, judo, skiing, fishing, hunting, firearms, dogs, antiques, reading, travel, and history.
Bob was predeceased by his parents Robert McMorran Somerville and Doreen Elizabeth (Allen) Somerville.
He is survived by his wife, Linda, of 52 years; his sister Elaine Somerville (Steve); his five children Lara Hamer (Ken), Bob Somerville (Carson), Shari McKeown (Bill), Nicole Somerville, and Gord Somerville; and his nine grandchildren Noa, Madalen & Eran Hamer; Emily & Carter Stewart; Kamryn Somerville; Eilish McKeown; and Anika & Sren Hoechst.
Bob will also be missed by his cousins and their families.
Thank you to Dr. Farias and the hospital staff on 3B and ICU for their exemplary care.
In keeping with Bob’s wishes, there will be no public service.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Campbell River Maritime Heritage Society.