Cover photo for Robert A. Matlock, Jr.'s Obituary
Robert A. Matlock, Jr. Profile Photo
1949 Robert A. Matlock, Jr. 2024

Robert A. Matlock, Jr.

August 11, 1949 — March 6, 2024

Kalamazoo, Michigan


Robert Arnold Matlock, Jr., 74, passed away at Rose Arbor Hospice in Kalamazoo, MI on March 6, 2024  Bob (or Dad as many knew him) took the world by storm when he was born on August 11, 1949 in San Francisco, CA to Robert A. Matlock, Sr. and Marjorie L.C. Matlock. His family moved to Kalamazoo, MI where he graduated from  Kalamazoo Central High School and eventually became a proud member of the United States Navy.  While visiting teachers and friends at Kalamazoo Central after boot camp fate stepped in and introduced him to the love of his life Dorothy while she was working in the school office.  He then married  Dorothy (Nedervelt) Matlock in 1970.  The navy took them to Jacksonville, FL where he served on ship DD841 that took him around the world and to Vietnam.  After their first child was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis they moved back to Kalamazoo where they raised their family.  Bob was the proud father of the late Robert (Robbie) A. Matlock III, Dorothy (Dorrie), Christina (Christi), Amanda and Donny.  Bob worked for the City of Battle Creek as a civil engineer, designing many of the roads you drive today.  He was a member of North Park Reformed Church that he joined after marrying Dorothy.  Many in the community will feel the void left behind by Bob, he was a fixture in the Comstock Band of Blue for the years his kids were active (and even after for a little bit).  Many kids will remember his booming voice getting their attention while at the hours of practices, band camps and performances.  You would always be able to find him on the sidelines helping move equipment on/off the field and celebrating with all of his kids when they won a competition.  Bob was also active for many years with Youth for Understanding bringing hundreds of exchange students to Michigan and being part of their lives.  He never met a teenager that he couldn’t make laugh and want to call him “Dad” as well.  

Bob was preceded in death by his parents, his first born Robbie, and the love of his life, his wife Dorothy.  He will be  deeply mourned by his surviving children Dorrie (Peter) Bell, Christi Matlock, Amanda (Kevin) Niece and Donny (Tahlia) Matlock.  Grandchildren Peter (Brittany) Bell Jr., Yasmina Matlock-Zavala, Robecca Matlock-Zavala, Dorothy Matlock-Zavala, Soniya Zavala, Leanna Zavala, Emma Niece, Jared Niece, Karleigh Matlock and Madilynn Matlock.  His future great-grandchild due in June will hear the legacy of Bumpa from all of her cousins, aunts and uncles.  The family would like to thank the staff at Borgess Medical Center and Rose Arbor for taking care of our giant who left the world too soon.  We know that he has joined Dorothy and Robbie, and is watching over all of us left behind.  In lieu of flowers the family ask that donations be made in Bob’s memory to Centrica Care online or sent to 7100 Stadium Dr. Kalamazoo, MI 49009.

Friends may visit with Bob's family on Saturday, March 23rd, from 10:00-11:00 AM, at Langeland Family Funeral Homes, Memorial Location, 622 S. Burdick Street, Kalamazoo, MI  49007, where his service will be held at 11:00 AM. Burial will follow at Mt. Ever-Rest Memorial Park, South. 

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