Kenneth Robert “Bob”
Huff passed away February 11, 2015, at home in Boise at the age of 87.
Bob was born July 1, 1927, in Kansas City, Missouri, to Lawrence
and Madge Alice Fisher Huff. He was
always grateful to his father for teaching him a solid work ethic when he was a
boy growing up on the farm. He could perform any task on the farm when he was
only 10 years old. He credited his mother with saving his life when she nursed
him through a six-month long death threatening illness of typhoid fever when he
was 12 years old. She later gave him the encouragement and support needed to
complete an education that he credited with turning his life around.
During World War II, Bob left high school in 1944 to enlist in
the U.S. Navy when he was 17 years old. This was not unusual for young men
during World War II when patriotism was sweeping the nation. He remained
forever a patriot and was very proud of his military service.
While aboard ship, he studied under the direction of the ship’s
education officer and returned home to complete the General Education
Development Test for his high school diploma from William Chrisman High School
at Independence, Missouri. He was very proud of this achievement that enabled
him to enroll at the University of Missouri in 1948 after completing nearly
four years in the service of his country. He earned the degree of Bachelor of
Journalism, majoring in Advertising, graduating in 1952.
While attending Mizzou, he was initiated into the Alpha Tau Omega
social fraternity. He was elected President by his fellow members. Bob was
active in the Inter-Fraternity Council, Student Government Association, and
Intra-Mural Athletics and was also a member of the Alpha Delta Sigma
After graduation from college, Bob worked in the newspaper
business for two years including one year for the Kansas City Star before
beginning a successful 36-year career in the food industry. He started out as
Advertising Manager for The Fleming Company and later switched to sales and
then was promoted to Division Manager. Bob was elected President of the
Missouri Valley Food Distributors Association, a regional trade association, by
his peers in 1963. He was named a corporate vice president in 1966.
Under his direction, Fleming had outstanding growth in Kansas
City and he was rewarded with a promotion to Regional Vice President in 1969
with responsibility for five of Fleming’s midwest divisions. He moved
to Oklahoma City with his family. One year later, Bob and his family were
transferred to the San Francisco Bay area where he was named Fleming’s
Regional Vice President for the Western United States.
In 1973, he was chosen by Albertson’s, Inc. to
fill a new post as Vice President and General Manager of Distribution. The
family moved to Boise where Bob began a very successful career with Albertson’s.
He was very instrumental in developing a state-of-the-art distribution system
opening several distribution centers over the next 17 years. At the time of his
retirement in 1989, he was Executive Vice President of Albertson’s.
Bob married Betty, his wife of 49 years in 1965. Betty preceded
him in death June 6, 2014. Their family included Betty’s three
daughters that he loved as much as his very own. He was always very proud of
his new family. Several promotions followed that required moving to new areas
and the family always stayed together and finally put their roots down in
Boise, Idaho. Bob is survived by his three daughters, Darcia Furney, Sheri
Thorp, and Pamela Barnhart and their husbands, David Furney, Scott Thorp, and
Robert Barnhart all of Boise. He and Betty had five grandsons, Scotty Thorp
(his wife Danielle), Nathan Douglas, Zach Barnhart (his wife Kristi), Shane
Thorp, and Parker Barnhart and one great grandson, Chase Thorp, all of Boise.
Bob and Betty joined the Crane Creek Country Club in 1974. This
began a life-long fascination and a mutual love for golf that culminated after
retirement with thirteen winters spent in the California desert where they were
members of the Desert Horizons Country Club at Indian Wells. For many years,
Bob played every Friday with the Dewsweepers at Crane Creek Country Club. Other
interests included skiing at Sun Valley, fly fishing in the Wood River Valley,
following his favorite sports teams, and traveling the world with fellow
Bob became a member of the Presbyterian Church by baptism and
confession of his faith at Saint Luke United Presbyterian Church of Kansas
City, Missouri, in May 1966. This was the church where he and Betty were
married. For the past several years they have attended First Presbyterian
Church in Boise. Bob became a member of The First Presbyterian Church at which
time he reaffirmed his faith and belief in God.
Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, February
17, 2015, at The First Presbyterian Church, 950 W. State St. Boise, Idaho. Services are under the direction of the
Alden-Waggoner Funeral Chapel.
The family suggests that, in lieu of flowers, memorial
contributions be made to The First Presbyterian Church or the Idaho Community