Robert (Bob) E. Pernu, 87, of Omro, formerly of Parkville, Minn., died peacefully on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021.
He was born July 14, 1933, to Edney and Agda Ellen (Hilmas) Pernu of Parkville.
He graduated from Mountain Iron High School in 1951. He went on to Kansas State to pursue a teaching degree and play football. He sustained a career ending knee injury his freshman year and transferred to Saint Cloud State in Minnesota to complete his teaching degree. Upon graduation, he taught high school Social Studies, Civics and Health in Huron, S.D., Roseau, Minn., and Mountain Iron, and coached Football, Basketball, Track and Cross Country. He fondly remembered all of his student’s names and loved keeping in touch with them over the years. Bob was inducted into the MIB Basketball Hall of Fame in 2017.
Bob loved singing in the Gethsemane Lutheran Church choir and was a member of the barbershop quartet from 1970 through 1997. He enjoyed playing the button box and sharing the joy of music with children and nursing homes, and always had a box of musical percussion instruments with him so they could play along. He was an artist and enjoyed oil and acrylic painting, and after retiring from teaching he let his artistic talent thrive and became a professional wood carver. His wood carvings of birds and carousel horses are proudly owned by many people around the world.
Bob is survived by his wife of 65 years, Betty; sister, Ena of Iron, Minn., his children: Robert Pernu (Julie) of Polk City, Iowa, Connie Cogger of Eveleth, Minn., David Pernu of Pardeeville, Wis., and Shari Frost (Dan) of Omro, Wis. He adored his grandchildren: Christina, Billy, David, Katie, Brody, Jaeden, Riken and Airie; as well as five great-grandchildren; and one great great-granddaughter.
He was preceded in death by his parents Edney and Ellen Pernu; his brother, Edney (Nonny); and his infant son, William.
Per Bob’s wishes cremation will take place and a small family service will be held. A family gathering will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to All Saints Lutheran Church, 1072 Honey Creek Rd., Oshkosh, WI 54904.