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Robert J. Kinsella

April 13, 1930 ~ October 30, 2022 (age 92)
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Obituary

Robert Joseph Kinsella, 92, passed away on Sunday October 30th. He was born in Waterloo, New York on April 13, 1930 to the late Daniel Kinsella and Margaret Ferguson. The youngest of five children, Bob attended school in Waterloo, where he lettered in three sports and was known for setting the school high jump record and playing basketball against the Harlem GlobeTrotters. As a child of the Great Depression, it took convincing by his former coach to enroll in the State University of New York at Cortland, where he graduated with a B.A. in education. He would later go on to earn a master's degree from Niagara University and a PhD from Syracuse University. After graduation from Cortland, Bob volunteered for the Navy during the Korean War, where he earned his wings and was deployed overseas. He had an adventurous military career that included flying reconnaissance patrols off China, managing military communications for Formosa (Taiwan), having dinner with General Chiang Kai-Shek, piloting the first Navy squadron to circumnavigate the globe, performing reconnaissance during the Suez Crisis, landing on aircraft carriers, and almost flying his plane to the South Pole. On January 19, 1957, Bob married the love of his life, Mary Louise Daily of Homer, and settled down to become a science teacher and then a principal. While Bob and Mary would live in multiple locations over the years, they spent most of their lives in Minoa, where they were a fixture in the community. They would raise their six incredible children together: Kathy, Debbie, Mike, Dave, Steve and Joe. Bob is best known for being the principal of Minoa Elementary, where he was beloved by generations of children. He wrote a book on his experiences as a small town principal called Both Sides of the Desk, published in 2008. Bob’s house on Osborne Street was a refuge for neighborhood kids, and a gathering place for his six children, six sons and daughters-in-law, and eighteen grandchildren. He was an avid magician, active in the Lions Club and Toastmasters, and served as the town judge. Bob enjoyed gardening, genealogy, movies with good endings, maple walnut ice cream, no. 8 spaghetti, tomato sandwiches, the Sunday funnies, spending time with grandkids, a good laugh, and a glass of wine with Mary. Bob will always be remembered for his smile, quick wit, love of family, easy going manner, storytelling, eternal optimism, intellectual curiosity, and his laugh. Oh the laugh.

He is survived by his six children, Kathryn Therrien, Deborah Bean, Michael Kinsella, David Kinsella, Stephen Kinsella and Joseph Kinsella, his sons and daughters-in-law (Marc Therrien, Bob Bean, Sandy Kinsella, Robin Kinsella, Karen Kinsella and Kristin Kinsella), his 18 grandchildren, his six great-grandchildren, and his many beloved nieces and nephews.

At the request of the family all services are being privately held.

In lieu of flowers, the family has suggested donations to a charity near and dear to Bob’s heart: the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (cff.org).

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