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Friday, September 29, 2023
Starts at 10:00am (Pacific time)
It is with profound sadness we announce the passing of Robert Franklin Rhodes, 71, on September 15th, 2023. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and steadfast friend to all whose lives he touched.
He was born December 10, 1951 in Kern County, a son of the late Jack and Mary Ann Rhodes. Robert spent much of his life in Bakersfield where he met lifelong friends and had experiences that made him known as a local legend. After graduating from East High School in 1970, he proudly served his country in the The United States Navy where he was the first group stationed at Diego Garcia. His assignment was to construct buildings which would be used to complete a world-wide communication network setup by the U.S. Military.
After serving his country, Robert returned to Bakersfield where he met and married the love of his life, Nancy Banducci. Robert and Nancy were married June 18, 1977 and were blessed with two beautiful children; Christopher and Jennifer, whom they are both so proud of to this day.
Always crafty with his hands and never met a problem he couldn’t solve; Robert followed in his father’s footsteps as owner of Rhodes Appliance in 1983 and ran it successfully until he retired in 2017. He was known by all as honest, hardworking, and a loyal person throughout his career.
One of Robert’s many passions was for the game of poker which began in high school with a group of his friends. These poker games became a monthly event at Rhodes Appliance in the back of his shop. From these games, the creation of the Bakersfield Athletic Club (B.A.C.) was founded, where Robert was President and a member along with 11 other friends.
Other passions of Roberts included his historic Chip ‘N Chug golf tournament, barbequing at Garces High School football games and weekly lunches at Luigi’s; all of which included his great group of friends.
Furthermore, he also loved going on his annual camping trips at Florence Lake, fishing in Mexico and Alaska, spending time at Bass Lake, and traveling his bucket list destinations with Nancy by his side. Some of the many places they traveled included Scotland, Ireland, and Costa Rica with the Montoya’s and Bowman’s.
Of all his achievements, Robert was most proud of his role as a caring father and grandfather, or more affectionately referred to as “Papa” by his grandchildren Harper, Camden, and Demi.
He is survived by his loving wife, Nancy, son Christopher and daughter-in-law Meghann, daughter Jennifer as well as his sister Jody and brother-in-law Steve, brother Richard and sister-in-law Dawn, and sister-in-law Dee.
Preceding Robert in death are his parents Jack and Mary Ann, and brother Kenneth.
Let us remember the love, laughter and wisdom Robert shared with us all. His memory will live on in our hearts, and the lessons he taught us will continue to guide us as we navigate life’s journey.
Pallbearers: Rick Montoya, Jim Bowman, Ernie Montoya, Paul Diebel, Bruce Beretta, Darrel Feliz, Greg Hauptman, David Bealessio, Joe Lightsey, Max Newman.
Services will be on September 29th, 2023, beginning 10:00 am at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, 12300 Reina Road. Burial services will be at Greenlawn Funeral Home Southwest, 2739 Panama Lane. Followed by a reception at the Wool Growers Restaurant, 620 E 19th Street.