Robert Kenneth Tufts, 81
Robert Kenneth Tufts, 81, of Easton passed away after a brief illness on November 10, 2021, at the Good Samaritan Medical Center in Brockton surrounded by his family. Robert lived 49 years after his first open heart bypass surgery which was a new procedure at the time it was performed. Robert was the son of Kenneth Nelson Tufts and Marion "Arlene" (Williams) Tufts both of Easton. He was the brother of the late Thomas E. Tufts and his wife Susan of Woodbridge VA, and Beverly A. Masaitis and her late husband David of Taunton. Due to the early death of his father, Bob worked to help support the family starting at age 13. He would recall his days working at Howard Johnsons, delivering the Enterprise, and many other jobs. While attending Oliver High School (1958) he was musically inclined, his nickname was “Bobby Bassoon.” During high school, he earned a scholarship to study with the first Bassoonist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, was selected to play for the All-State Orchestra, and served as a student conductor for the OA band. He also enjoyed performing with his childhood friends in the Pickle Barrel Five where his instrument of choice was the washboard, on occasion he would also play the saxophone. During the last 10 years, he took up playing his Mother's Hammond organ and was actively playing and taking lessons up until last week.
Bob started his professional career as an office clerk at BrockGas, he learned many lessons there and always mentioned how much he learned about the propane business from the owner, John Inella. The company morphed into Brockton Taunton gas and finally as Bay State Propane before his retirement in 1995. He worked on many projects over the years including permitting for the two LNG tanks in Dorchester MA. A master gas fitter, he also served as Easton's first gas inspector. Bob was active in many organizations, several after his retirement. He was President of both the Easton Rotary Club and later the Brockton Rotary Club. He received Rotary's highest award as A Paul Harris Fellow, not once but twice. Past president and current trustee of Unity Church in North Easton, Trustee of The Easton Community Corporation, Past President/Treasurer and current trustee of the Village Cemetery, ambassador for the Metro South Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts, and various boards and committees with the Propane Gas Association of New England. In his retirement, he drove an ice cream truck and loved seeing all the children on his route. He later sold promotional projects for S.E.T. associates.
Bob liked going to the car races at Seekonk Speedway, watching the boats coming in and out of the water at the Plymouth Harbor boat ramp. Most of all he enjoyed his family. He looked forward to visits from his grandchildren and great grandchildren on a regular basis. Playing cribbage, especially with his brother Tom. He also enjoyed camping over the years. Most people remember his humor and his ability to be the life of the party. Bob was proactive on household maintenance and enjoyed perfecting his lawn.
Robert leaves his High School sweetheart and wife of 60 years Shirley E. (Weir) Tufts. They lived in the house they built by hand with the help of family in 1961. Sons Stephen R. Tufts and his wife Debbie of Easton, and Jeffrey L. Tufts and his wife Paula of West Wareham. A daughter Kelly H.S. (Tufts) Victoria and her husband Jose of West Bridgewater. Nine Grandchildren: Jennifer Stevens and her husband Christopher, Heather Baker and her husband Andrew, Samantha Tufts, All of Easton. Thomas Tufts of Detroit MI. Timothy Tufts of Seattle WA. Jessica & Carla Buckley of West Wareham. Samuel & Nathaniel Victoria of West Bridgewater. Great grandchildren Carter, Oliver, Camden, and Logan.
Robert’s funeral will be held at the Unity Church, 9 Main Street N. Easton on Saturday, November 20th at 10 a.m. Relatives and friends are invited to attend. Interment will follow at Village Cemetery, N. Easton. Visiting hours will be held at the Kane Funeral Home & Cremation Services 605 Washington St. Easton on Friday, November 19th from 5 - 8 p.m. In lieu of flowers donations can be made in Roberts name to American Heart Association, 300 5th Ave, Suite 6, Waltham, MA 02451 or heart.org