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“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” ~Matthew 5:4


“Next to love, sympathy is the divinest passion of the human heart” ~Edmund Burke

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"The creatures that inhabit this earth - be they human beings or animals - are here to contribute, each in its own particular way, to the beauty and prosperity of the world." ~The Dahli Lama

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“Love is a portion of the soul itself, and it is of the same nature as the celestial breathing of the atmosphere of paradise.” ~Victor Hugo

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“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” ~Thomas Campbell

Gaffney, Robert OBit photoBob was born and raised in Marshfield, WI and moved to Wausau shortly after graduating from Marshfield HS in 1969. In Wausau (Rib Mt), he started his own body shop business as a teenager. There, he met his best friend and love of his life; Bob and Wendy were married in 1978 and soon after, had their only son Justin. Together Bob and Wendy ran a handful of successful businesses and most passionately, he built custom homes as Gaffney Construction LLC. For the past 20+ years Bob, Wendy, and Justin spoke, met, or spent the day together professionally on a near daily basis; Gaffney Construction is truly a family business. Bob and Wendy were inseparable and he was the proudest of his son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren.
Bob believed he was on this earth to make himself better and to help the people around him. He was known for his philosophical and somewhat profound sayings – affectionately called Bob-isms. His un-shattered optimism was only overshadowed by his larger than life personality that he proudly displayed with his infectious smile. Bob was respected by many and left behind a legacy for his friends and family to cherish and share with others. He loved his family and friends unconditionally and was the first to call on a birthday or a sad occasion. Fear did not limit him and he was willing to take a risk to succeed. Bob embraced a productive lifestyle yet always had time for his family; he enjoyed planting and picking vegetables with his granddaughter, as well as boating with his friends. Bob loved to travel with Wendy and treasured Florida among other ‘warm’ places. He avidly rode his bike and always kept himself in shape – both physically and mentally. Bob had a strong mind, strong faith in Christ, strong heart, and a strong community of friends and family. His strength, compassion, and unique humor will be remembered by the people and lives he’s touched in his lifetime.
Bob is preceded in death by his brother Gerald, his sister Linda Kay, his father Robert, and his mother Marcella (Sally). He is survived by his wife Wendy, his son Justin (Emily), and his grandchildren Samantha, Alexa, and Jaxon, his sister Donna Siemers (Dale), and his brother Donald (Eileen). Bob was also Jaxon’s Godfather. Survivors include his aunts and uncles, numerous nieces and nephews, Wendy’s family, Emily’s family, and his close friends.
A Funeral Mass will be held Saturday, April 8, 2017 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Matthew Catholic Church, 229 S. 28th Avenue, Wausau, 54401. Visitation will be held Friday, April 7, 2017 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Brainard Funeral Home, 522 Adams St., Wausau, 54403, and again on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of mass at church. Burial will follow the mass.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Robert’s name to The Neighbors Place or the Salvation Army.

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  1. Louie Kraus

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Hard to understand why some things happen, but cherish the memories! I’m sure Bob’s spirit will live on in you and Justin. I only had the opportunity to meet and talk with Bob at WABA meetings, but he had a great ability to make you feel comfortable and important. My sympathies.

  2. Sara Lenzner

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Justin, Emily, Samantha and family – so sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathy to your family.

  3. Sue Hansen

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Dear Wendy, Justin and family,
    I am so very, very sorry for your loss.
    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Sue Hansen

  4. Dave Skola

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Very sorry to hear about Bob’s passing!! My prayers are with the family!! 🙁

  5. Fernando Riveron

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    i’m so sorry for your loss Bob was a wonderful man I loved his gentle loving demeanor. May God bless you and give you peace

  6. Marta Stephenson

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    My heart is breaking for you and Justin – Wendy he is an incredible legacy in taking an ordinary moment and making it magic. There are only a small number of people you will ever meet in this life that can make anyone feel like they are the only person in the room. His contagious laughter disarmed the most guarded personality. Love and prayers to you and your family. Big hugs to you.

  7. Gerilyn Dumask

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Please RIP Bob, watch over your family and friends and keep them safe.

  8. Tim Stockowitz

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    So very sorry for your loss. Bob was a great guy and will be missed. My deepest condolences

  9. Mary & Rod Derby

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Wendy we express sincere sympathy for Bob’s passing. You and your family will be in our prayers during this most difficult time.

  10. Julie Kryshak

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Wendy and Family,
    I was so sorry to hear about Bob, he will be missed by many. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  11. Lisa Post

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Wendy & Justin –
    We are so sorry for your loss. I hope the memories you share will help you find peace during this difficult time. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Our Deepest Sympathy – Lisa & Pat Post

  12. Micheal Wirth

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Wendy, I am so saddened by your loss. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers through this difficult time! Bob was loved by all!
    Micheal Wirth

  13. Jodie Harnish

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Bob will be so missed. We will always remember his smile, laughter and love for life. He and Wendy were such a beautiful loving couple that truly loved each other and being together.
    We will always remember our fun times in Florida and Belize

    You will be missed WE love you Our strength and love to Wendy and all your family

    Jodie and Scott

  14. Celeste Babl

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Dear Wendy Justin and family, We were so saddened to hear about Bob. We truly loved him and his infectious sense of humor. Please know you are in our thoughts and prayers💕💕💕💕🙏🏻. Our deepest sympathy. Al and Celeste

  15. Sue (Muench) Fruehbrodt

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    My deepest sympathy to the Gaffney Family. I have fond memories (mostly of shenanigans – lol) of Bob as a kid, having lived across the road for our entire childhood. Rest In Peace Bob.

  16. Pamela Laatsch

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Oh Wendy…my deepest sympathy to you and your family! Please know I will keep you all in my prayers. My heart is heavy for you for a life cut short. Let memories carry you through this sad time and feel blessed for how much he loved you. Sincerely Pam Laatsch (Kopp)

  17. Steve & Janet Mitwede

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    Bob painted our 1964 T Bird in 1975 or 76 while Steve was gone on active duty for two weeks with the Navy. It was always great to talk with Bob about his buildings that he was doing. Our thoughts and prayer to the family.

  18. Ron Kelly

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    I’m from Marshfield graduating from Columbus in 1969. Bob and I hung out a little in our teenager days. Actually got in a car/train accident with Bob in a car he was driving. He did like taking chances. Great guy with a big smile. Condolences to family and he will be missed by all.

  19. Kari Peterson

    04/05/2017 at 2:57 pm

    My sincerest sympathies. Bob was truly “one in a million” – a great conversationalist, full of enthusiasm, with the most infectious smile. We have many happy memories of him telling funny (or meaningful!) stories, jokes, and pep talks – he was so full of love as well as laughter. May you be comforted at this difficult time by your favorite memories together, and please know that so many of us are sending you our love and prayers. Love you! XO