Obituary of Robert A. Higgins
Robert A. Higgins passed away on January 30, 2019. Robert "Bob" was born on Sept. 5, 1924 in Watertown, SD and was raised in Aberdeen, SD. After a year at the University of Minnesota, he joined the army and served over two years in Europe during World War II. He was a proud veteran of the 1256th Combat Engineers Battalion. After the war, he returned to the University of Minnesota to finish his Bachelor's in Electrical Engineering. He went on to work in the oil industry in West Texas. In 1956 he met Barbara Fagerlie during a visit to Eau Claire, WI. After a long distance relationship, they were married in Eau Claire on Dec. 27, 1958. Bob and Barb later moved to Madison, WI, where Bob worked on his Master's Degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin. While living in Madison, they welcomed their first child, Patricia, into the family in late 1964. The family then moved to Columbia, MO, where Bob completed his Doctoral Degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Missouri. Bob and Barb welcomed two sons into the family, Daniel and Steven, in 1966 and 1968, while in Columbia. Bob and the family moved to Brookings, SD in 1969 where he started as an Assistant Professor at South Dakota State University. In 1977, Bob transitioned to working in the computer industry in the Twin Cities, with the family moving to Eden Prairie. Bob returned to academics in 1985 as a Professor at St. Cloud State University, while maintaining residence in Eden Prairie. Bob was a popular lecturer at St. Cloud State and was well liked by his students and colleagues. He retired from teaching in 1995. Afterwards, he served for many years as an usher at Orchestra Hall. Bob was an avid swimmer, spending many mornings swimming laps at the Eden Prairie Community Center, and was recognized by Masters Swimming for swimming 100 miles. He also enjoyed helping coach his sons in ice hockey and attending their practices and games. He faithfully attended his children's band and choir concerts, and theater performances. Bob served a three year term on the Eden Prairie School Board and was a long time member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church. In later years, Bob enjoyed travelling with Barb. He particularly enjoyed trips to visit sons Daniel and Steven and their families in Kansas and Ohio and thoroughly enjoyed more frequent visits from daughter Patricia and her son Stephan, who remained in the Twin Cities. Bob was a loving husband, father, brother, uncle, and friend to many and was happiest when visiting or being visited by others. Bob was preceded in death by parents Arthur Higgins and Nicoline (Huseth, Higgins) Fagerlie, by brother Richard Higgins, and by sister Marjorie (Higgins, Rotnem) Moore. He is survived by his wife of sixty years, Barbara; children Patricia, Daniel, and Steven; by grandchildren Stephan Greene; Nicholas, Michael, Zachary Higgins; Eric, Seth, Grace Higgins; his sister Jeanette (Higgins) Dahl; and by many nieces & nephews & their families. Memorial service: St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Eden Prairie, Sat., Mar. 16, 2019. Visitation at 1:00 pm, service at 2:00 pm. The family asks that contributions be made to the Higgins-Barnes Scholarship for Native American Students at South Dakota State University Foundation, or to the Minnesota Orchestra.