Longtime Area Teacher, Korean War Vet Bob Strom Dies at 87
Clarence Robert (Bob) Strom, 87, an American History teacher at Otego and the Unadilla Central School District for almost three decades, passed away Sunday, March 22, 2020, at Bayfront Health Hospital, Punta Gorda, Fla.
He was born in Erskine, Minn., on July 28, 1932, the son of the late Adolf and Fedilise Strom. Bob graduated from Swanville High School in 1950. After graduation Bob enlisted in the Navy. He served aboard the aircraft carriers USS Antietam and USS Shangri-La during the Korean War.
After the Navy, Bob and his family lived in St. Cloud, Minn., where he attended the University of Minnesota under the GI Bill, graduating with a dual major in History/Physical Education and earned his master’s degree in education from the SUNY Oneonta.
In 1959 he moved to Otego, where he was an American History teacher and coached baseball and football for 28 years. He was the chairman of the Social Studies department for 15 years. He spent 25 summers as the recreation director for the Village of Otego. He helped to organize the Little League and other sporting activities including the building and maintenance of the Otego pool.
Bob will be remembered as a devoted and loving husband, father, grandfather, uncle, teacher, coach and friend. He deeply cared for his family, students/athletes and community. During his teaching tenure he was awarded the Teacher of the Year, something that truly touched his heart. He was a member of committees that brought in federal funds for the school library and Social Studies Department. He was also part of the Faculty Scholarship committee that helped provide 2 annual scholarships.
His son Jim also remembered that Bob struggled with dyslexia. As a teacher he recognized and had a heart for students that had difficulties with reading. He would often stay after class to help them with reading the course materials. As a teacher he was always there for his students. He was a mentor, lending support to students both inside and outside of school. He thought outside the box and the curriculum, including teaching his student’s important life skills like how to do their income taxes and how to dance!
Bob was passionate about many things including golf, which he played weekly right up until 2019. He was a member of the Oneonta County Club for over 50 years. In recent years he joined the Sidney Country Club and ran into many of his former baseball and football team players. He delighted in reconnecting with them and talking about the “old days”. He was a member of the Oneonta Elks Club, American Legion and the Retired Otsego County Teacher’s Association.
He loved the hors eraces, casinos, poker and above all, he was a diehard New York Yankees fan. His favorite player of all time was Yogi Berra who appeared in 14 World Series as a member of the Yankees and won 10 of them.
For more on this man's remarkable life, and funeral service information, visit our publishing partner at AllOtsego.com