Robert Louis Weide

Published 2:52 pm Monday, May 22, 2023

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Columbus– Robert Louis Weide, 75, of Columbus, NC, passed away on May 17, 2023.

Born in Colorado and raised in Topeka, Kansas, Bob was the son of Donald and Allene Weide. An Eagle Scout, he served in the US Army in Korea as a company clerk. He later earned a degree in Asian Studies at the University of Kansas and returned to Korea for several years to teach English.

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Upon returning to the US, he pursued graduate studies in Linguistics at the University of Pittsburgh, where he met his wife, Ellen. After a year of teaching English on a Fulbright Fellowship in Yugoslavia, they returned to Pittsburgh, where he joined the speech recognition research team at Carnegie Mellon University.

Bob was a devoted father to their two children. The family spent a year in the Galapagos Islands, where Bob taught English and Science to fifth and sixth graders at a bilingual school. They subsequently moved to Hickory, NC, where Bob taught reading at the elementary level in Hickory City Schools and served for a time as board president in the Unitarian Universalist Church of Catawba Valley.

While teaching kids to read was one of his proudest achievements, Bob also loved his garden. He and Ellen shared a love of traveling, and together they covered many miles in Europe and North America.

Although Bob retired from teaching early because of a diagnosis of early-onset mixed dementia, he continued to pursue his love of traveling, gardening, hiking, and kayaking as long as he was able. After retiring to Columbus, he volunteered at Thermal Belt Outreach, hiked with the Tryon Trail Trotters and played spoons with the Overmountain Old-Time Band.

Bob is survived by his wife, Ellen Douglas, of Columbus; son Benjamin Weide of Brevard; daughter Allison Weide (Ian Pause) of Landrum; brother Don Weide (Robin Warner) of Zion’s Crossroads, VA; sister Sandy Parks (Larry) of Topeka, KS, and sister Malia Barth of Georgetown, TX. He and Ellen were also loved and supported in his last years by his many

in-laws in the area: Mollie Douglas Turner, Ben and Kathleen Douglas, Strat Douglas and Jodie Jackson, and Marianne and Mike Carruth.

A memorial gathering will be held at FENCE on June 6 at 2 pm. Donations may be made to MemoryCare, 100 Far Horizons Lane, Asheville, NC 28803 (