Robert “Bob” Noever – Obituary

By  | January 30, 2018 | Filed under: Hampton Cove Funeral Home, News

Robert “Bob” Noever passed away peacefully on January 23, 2018, at the age of 86 from Parkinson’s complications following a stroke. He had a unique way of looking at the world and inspired others through his lifelong pursuit of sports, spirit, and art.

Bob was born in Muskogee, Oklahoma to William Warder and Gertrude Noever. In high school, he served as President of the Student Body and played varsity basketball. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Letters from the University of Oklahoma where he played freshman basketball and varsity golf. He won the Big Seven golf championship and earned a three-year varsity golf letter. He was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity.

Bob earned his Master of Divinity degree from the Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where he also served as Youth Minister at First United Methodist Church. At SMU, he met and eventually married his wife, Janet. During his nine years as pastor of New Haven United Methodist Church in Tulsa, Reverend Noever built the church from a congregation of 12 charter families into more than 1,000. He was recognized with several awards including: “Outstanding Young Tulsan”, the Jaycees Distinguished Service Award and the Tulsa Junior Chamber of Commerce award. He then moved to Crown Heights United Methodist Church in Oklahoma City, as one of the youngest pastors at one of Oklahoma’s largest churches. Like many church leaders during the turbulent late sixties, Bob was inspired by the call for racial equality from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, and saw the opportunity to apply the religious tenets of compassion, empathy and social justice to issues of racial and gender equality. He founded the Christopolitan Parish as a progressive church to address the changing needs of cosmopolitan and metropolitan congregations. While his progressive views on social justice, equality and the role of the church were radical at the time they now are the mainstay of many contemporary churches. As a talented artist, Bob featured oil and charcoal illustrations in his “pictorial preaching series” in which each week he painted large and original canvases to illustrate his sermon’s message. During those years, he ministered to hundreds of parishioners’ births, deaths and marriages.

Bob started a commercial art studio, Mark Graphics, in Oklahoma City through the 1970s and moved to Orlando, FL, in 1990 to consult for a golf equipment manufacturer, eventually retiring in 1993 to Huntsville, AL. Following his years of outstanding competitive golf results in high school and college, he remained a scratch golfer and life-long student of the game. He matched the course record for low score at Tulsa’s Championship LaFortune Park. He eventually authored a golf book in the 1990s titled, Sixth Sense Putting, to share his unique experiments in sports psychology.

His children will remember their father as a joyful philosopher, friend, and mentor. Over the years, Bob kept four meaningful statutes on his desk: Rodin’s The Thinker, Bernini’s David, The Myth of Sisyphus and The Good Shepherd. The Thinker captured Bob’s search for originality in thought and art. Bernini’s David embodied determination and athletic motion in the moment he prepares to slay Goliath. Sisyphus personified the toil and routine of everyday life. Finally, the Good Shepherd spoke to Bob’s empathy, compassion, and supportive inspiration.

He is survived by his two children, Nancy Noever of Los Angeles, CA, and David Noever of Huntsville, AL, his daughter-in-law Samantha and two grandchildren, Chloe’ and Max. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

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