On March 2, longtime resident, Robert (Bob) C. Hoyle of Fairview, NC and Moose, WY lost his battle with cancer at the age of 75. Bob worked 47 seasons as a National Park Service (NPS) Park Ranger at Grand Teton National Park, WY, where he developed the park’s astronomy interpretative program, and 10 seasons on the Blue Ridge Parkway, NC, where he performed interpretive outreach in the local public school system. He loved the National Park Service and all that it represented.
Bob received his BS in Physics from Lenoir Rhyne College, MA in Astronomy from the University of Virginia, and Morehead Fellow in Planetarium Administration from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He began his career as a college professor of physics and astronomy at Lenoir Rhyne College, now University, later taught at Catawba College, and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He also taught courses at Western Wyoming Community College, the Teton Science School, and Yellowstone Institute. His career continued with the NPS sharing his knowledge and all that he loved with park visitors and students. His wife, Blair, is retired from the Blue Ridge Parkway.
He was a passionate teacher, astronomer and telescope enthusiast, model train collector, photographer, and environmentalist. He loved his family and grandkids, friends, holidays, winter, traveling, classical music, and cats.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Wilford and Madeleine Hoyle of Cherryville, NC.
He is survived by his wife, Blair, of 46 years; his two children, Katie Zimmerman (Jamey) and Ben Hoyle (Audrey), of Moose, WY; his sister Penny Buff, of Cherryville, NC; sister-in-law Ann Alrich (John), of Winter Park, FL; sister-in-law Sally Johnston, of Ft. Lauderdale, FL; two grandchildren, Dylan and Ashlyn Zimmerman; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Celebrations of life gatherings are being held in the Asheville, NC area and later this summer in Grand Teton National Park, WY.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Grand Teton National Park in support of the planetarium building project and astronomy interpretative education activities in Grand Teton National Park. Checks can be made to Grand Teton National Park, P.O. Drawer 170, Moose, WY 83012, noting the donation account name, “Robert C. Hoyle Astronomy Fund”.
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