Robert Christie Obituary (1923 – 2022) – Hanover, NH

Robert William Christie

Hanover, NH — Robert William Christie died peacefully at his home in Hanover, NH on July 11, 2022 surrounded by his five children. Bob was born in Mineola, New York on September 22, 1923 to George Robert Christie and Elathene Ensko Christie. He spent his childhood in Freeport, New York where he learned to love the ocean and spent hours sailing on Long Island Sound. Bob attended Norwich University, class of 1944, graduating in 1947 following his service in World War II. His military experience was in the European Theater of Operations. He joined the Thirty Third Armored Regiment of the Third Armored Division at the beginning of the Ardennes Offensive, the so-called Battle of the Bulge. His combat service was as a platoon leader, and eventually a company commander in a medium tank battalion, and he earned a bronze star for leadership under fire. He described his speedy rise to company commander status as having much to do with the 300% attrition in men and equipment the 3rd Armored Division experienced going ashore in Normandy. He confessed to having felt neither brave nor heroic, and to usually being scared to death.

Bob went to SUNY Downstate School of Medicine on the GI bill and married Nancy Platou in 1948. He and Nancy raised five children. Bob started his medical career in general practice in Northfield, Vermont. He did a Fellowship in Pathology at Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital in Hanover, followed by stints at Brookhaven National Laboratory, National Institutes of Health, and as a pathologist at Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, Indiana. In 1955 he served as medical officer for a five-month expedition of the Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Establishment (SPIRE) studying the stratigraphy of the Greenland Ice Cap. Bob and Nancy moved their family to Lancaster, New Hampshire in 1961, where Bob established a pathology group practice that brought modern laboratory services to 8 rural hospitals. Bob was a firm believer in public service and made his mark on the community serving as chairman of the regional school board, a lay minister and member of the vestry at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, member of the Connecticut River Joint Commission, Trustee of Norwich University, and by establishing funds benefiting the North Country Chamber Players, youth literacy initiatives, and local conservation efforts. He served two rotations as a volunteer pathologist on SS HOPE, the retired Navy hospital ship that brought medical care to third world countries. A life-long learner, he received a BGS from Granite State College and honorary DGS from Norwich. Bob loved classical music and jazz, faithful dogs, painting, good scotch, writing, “Bert and I” stories, gardening, skiing, hiking, snowshoeing, and anything that meant connecting with the great outdoors. He raised his children to hike, camp, sail, and love the mountains. He cherished large holiday gathering with his children and grandchildren, never missed a dessert or opportunity to vote. Bob moved to Kendal in Hanover, New Hampshire in 2007, a community he adored where he made many dear friends, and spent much of the latter part of his life traveling, teaching, taking courses, and speaking out about his greatest concern: the unchecked human role in climate change. He felt strongly that every person can make a positive change in the world and is called to do so. He will be greatly missed.

Bob was predeceased by his parents, George and Elathene Christie, his brother, George Robert Christie, Jr. (Jed), and former wives Nancy, Rita, and Connie. He leaves sons Rob and Colin Christie (Carole) of Lancaster, daughter Sheelah MacKillop of Jefferson, daughters Bonnie Christie and Emilie Christie Burack (Tom) of Hopkinton, grandchildren Clayton Christie of Bradford, Elise St. Cyr of Northumberland, Ian Meier of Durango Colorado, Hannah Meier of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Margaret Christie of New York, NY, Page and Ron MacKillop of Jefferson, Brooke MacKillop of Dalton, Larsen and Beatrice Burack of Hopkinton, and great grandchildren Colton and Alden St. Cyr of Northumberland. A memorial service will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Lancaster on July 30 at 11:00 am. The family wishes to thank Dr. Linda Dacey and the staff at Kendal who treated Bob with care, dignity, and grace. Those wishing to remember Bob are invited to send donations to CLiF- the Children’s Literacy Foundation, 1536 Loomis Hill Road, Waterbury Center, VT 05677.

Published by Valley News on Jul. 19, 2022.

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