Robert Rumrill (Coach Bob), 84, passed away peacefully on April 24, 2021, in Des Moines, Iowa.
Robert Wayne Rumrill was born in Madison, South Dakota, to Harvey and Mildred (Larrington) Rumrill on February 9, 1937. He became a multi-sport athlete, competing in football, basketball, track and baseball for the Madison High School Bulldogs. He attended college at General Beatle College (now Dakota State University), also in Madison, earning a teaching degree while playing football, basketball and running track for the Trojans.
Upon graduation, Bob married Jane Johnson on July 29, 1961, a marriage that lasted 56 years. Bob began a teaching and coaching career that spanned six decades. Over the years, he taught and coached in Rutland, SD, Ruthton, MN, McLaughlin and Sisseton, SD, Merino, CO, Kremmling, CO, and finally Valley High School in Gilcrest, CO. At Merino, Bob coached his football teams to state championship runner-up in 1971 and a state championship in 1972. His basketball teams also reached the state tournaments. At Valley High School his football teams were perennial state playoff contenders in the 2A ranks, with state champion runner-ups in 1979 and 1982. He also coached basketball and boys and girls track for the Vikings. He served as athletic director at Valley High after retirement from coaching football as a head coach. In 2002, he was inducted into the Dakota State University Athletic Hall of Fame.
Coach Bob was beloved in the Valley School District community, where he left many students and fellow staff with their own humorous stories of his antics and wit. His life’s passion was coaching kids of every athletic ability. He worked to improve each young athlete with insightful performance-improving techniques, humor, and a sincere desire to enable each athlete to reach their full potential. He truly enjoyed the journey of each new season.
Bob was preceded in death by Jane in January of 2018. Survivors include children and grandchildren: Renee Rumrill, DVM of Montrose, CO, Paul Rumrill of LaSalle, CO, Joel and Karen Rumrill of Salem, OR, and their children Mackenzie and Cole, Leslie Brand of Ankeny, IA, and Andrea and John Walter of Polk City, IA, and their children, Kade, Grace, Jane and Mary. Also surviving is his brother Burton (Buz) and sister-in-law Georgia of Silver Lake, MN; in-laws, cousins, nieces, nephews and their families.
A memorial service and reception will be held in Gilcrest, CO, at Coach Bob Rumrill Field, on June 4th from 9am to 12pm. He will be put to rest alongside Jane at St. Thomas Cemetery in Madison, SD, on June 6th at 11am. A reception will follow at St. Peter on the Prairie, 24311 452nd Ave., Madison, SD 57042. Arrangements are entrusted with Rustand-Weiland Funeral Chapel.
The Rumrill family encourages donations to Valley High School Athletic, ATT: Mikki Kissler, PO BOX 156, Gilcrest, CO 80623.