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1948 Robert 2024

Robert L. Polzin

February 9, 1948 — February 2, 2024

Robert “Bob” Polzin passed away on February 2, 2024, one week before his 76th birthday.  He died amongst loving caregivers at Five Points Nursing and Rehabilitation, a skilled nursing facility in Amarillo, Texas.  Robert had been in frequent contact with his beloved wife and daughter, who were also living in Amarillo at the time.

The Rosary will be said on Thursday, February 8, 2024, at 5:30 p.m. at Schooler Funeral Home, which is located at 4100 S. Georgia St. in Amarillo.  A Funeral Mass will take place on Friday, February 9, 2024, at 10:00 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Cathedral in the chapel. St. Mary’s is located at 1200 S. Washington St. in Amarillo.  Burial will follow at Llano Cemetery East, located at 2900 S. Hayes St.

Robert was born on February 9, 1948, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Elmer W. Polzin and Anne L. Pretsch adopted him as an infant.  He spent most of his childhood in Colorado and completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Colorado.  He then moved to Lubbock, Texas, to complete his research.  Robert earned his Ph.D. in Physiology from Indiana State University in 1977.  His doctoral dissertation examined the neurological effects of the drug Valium.

Robert completed additional research at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, where he met his soon-to-be wife, Linda Despres.  Robert and Linda were married on July 8, 1978.  Unfortunately, Linda had a prior commitment to move to Dayton, Ohio, in 1979.  She was a civil servant working for the Department of Defense/ Air Force and was in a very upwardly mobile training program.  After moving to Dayton, Robert also obtained a civil service position within the Department of Defense in which he worked until his retirement in 2013.  In 1981, Robert and Linda moved back to San Antonio, Texas.  Their daughter, Laura Despres, was born in 1987.  She was the joy of his life.  In 1998, since Kelly Air Force Base was being closed, the family moved to Warner Robins, Georgia, so that Robert and Linda could continue their careers at Robins Air Force Base.  After retirement, Robert and his wife moved to Amarillo to be closer to their daughter, who had found work nearby.

Robert had a lifelong affinity for reading books, especially those written by authors including Isaac Asimov, Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, and Dean Koontz.  Seemingly since their inception, he enjoyed building and collecting Legos, a pastime he shared with his daughter.  He also had a lifelong passion for playing computer games and an ongoing interest in computer programming.  Some of his favorite vacation spots included various beaches and museums.

Robert is preceded in death by his adoptive parents and his father-in-law, James Despres.

Robert is survived by Linda Despres, his wife of 45 years, and his daughter, Laura Despres.  He became very close to his wife’s family and is survived by his brother-in-law, Michael Despres; his mother-in-law, Joyce Despres; and nephews and nieces, Cliffton, Kristin, Gregory, Jeffrey, and Kate Despres.

Flowers may be sent to Schooler Funeral Home, located at 4100 S. Georgia St., Amarillo, Texas 79110.  All prayers are greatly appreciated by the family.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Robert L. Polzin, please visit our flower store.


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