Robert Steven Jackson passed away on December 7th, 2021. He was born on June 10, 1956, in Rumford Maine, to parents Philip Lang Jackson and Arlene Ruth Brown. He spent his childhood in Clinton, Connecticut, and since his father was the school’s guidance counselor, Rob learned very early on to keep busy and stay out of trouble. For Rob, keeping busy meant spending any extra time at the Hammonasset Beach, boating, and waterskiing with friends and siblings Al, Dave, & Liz. Phil enrolled Rob into sailing camp where he first learned to sail a Bluejay class racing boat. Racing was now in his blood and suffice it to say he’d race at any opportunity, entering Hobie races at Hampton Beach, graduating to serving on a crew on the Flying Dutchman in the US Nationals in Annapolis, and the legendary Figawi Nantucket race.
Sailing and the ocean were his passions, but his greatest joy in life was being with family. As a youngster, Phil and Arlene, being educators thought the children would benefit by traveling around the country giving their children insights into natural resources by visiting as many National Parks as possible. After graduating from the Morgan School, Rob enrolled into Keene State College, where he met his future wife Deb. They lived in houses they built in Rindge while raising their two children Stephanie and Keith.
While attending college, Rob worked evenings at Millipore in Jaffrey, beginning as a mechanic eventually working his way to Management. He transferred to Bedford, Mass as a Junior Industrial Engineer where he analyzed process improvement flows. He was brought on to design and build a new group of manufacturing Lab Water Large Water Systems, moving it from EL Paso to Jaffrey, NH.
He left Millipore for a job with Schleicher and Schuell, Inc. as a Product Development Manager in Marketing. There he designed new products, including the Presterilized Disposable Replication Device, for which he received a US Patent.
He was recruited back to Millipore as Process Engineer in the Micro Electronics group, and at this time went back to school to complete his degree in Engineering. He then became Engineering Manager, responsible for many projects including the Wastewater Treatment Plant and the Biomass Plant.
He finished his engineering career at Teleflex in Jaffrey as Head of R&D and all of Engineering and Facilities, until his retirement in 2017.
While his children were little, Rob found time to support Stephanie and Keith in all their activities, including 4-H, Pony Club, Motor Cross and Snowmobiling. Thus, it made sense to move the family to a large farmhouse in Fitzwilliam, where he and his father-in-law, Homer, soon to become a true and dear friend, built a barn to provide the space to support all their hobbies.
It was in Fitzwilliam that Rob began his involvement with the fire department, ultimately becoming Deputy Fire Chief. After moving back to Rindge, he continued his firefighting/EMT and moved up to Deputy Chief, as well as serving as the Deputy Forest Fire Warden for the state of New Hampshire. In 2020, he and his wife Sue moved to Wilton, and Rob became involved with the Wilton Fire Department, serving as Deputy Fire Chief until he was forced to resign due to illness.
Throughout his life, Rob was one to not be idle, so it was paramount to be busy with constructive projects or volunteering his time. In earlier years, he could be found offering sailing lessons on Laurel Lake and Lake Monomonac, as well as serving on the Ski Patrol at Temple & Crotched Mountains. He was lucky to have found an ice sailing boat and could be found sailing on many of the iced lakes of New England.
One of his greatest joys was being able to build a skiff with his son Keith, enjoying fishing in many of the local lakes as well as warmer waters near Crystal River, Florida.
Rob loved to go places and see things, meet new people, and share stories with anyone. Some of his favorite trips with his family and friends included Ireland, Arizona, Mexico, California, Washington, DC, and Florida. One which gave him so much enjoyment was chartering a catamaran in Tortola & cruising all around the British Virgin Islands for two weeks with Sue, Stephanie & Tim.
In his final days, he found love and solace spending every minute he could with his best friend and buddy, his golden doodle, Tug.
We would like to thank the fire department crews for always making Rob feel valued and important in all of his capacities with them. He felt honored and rewarded by being able to learn from the best and being able to serve with such wonderful people.
Rob is survived by his wife Sue, daughter Stephanie (Tim Derlinga) , son Keith (Jasmine Hopkins), step sons Tim Ward and Caleb Ward (Tiffanie Burrows), brothers Allan, Dave, sister Liz Booth (David), and nephew Austin. He had made a fond connection with his father-in-law, Earle Whitney, and will be missed by so many of friends and co-workers, and all the sailors he met along his life’s journey.
The family wishes to express gratitude to local fire departments for their continued support, to Compassus Hospice of Merrimack, and also to the Monadnock Community Hospital Oncology department for providing Rob with compassionate caring, friendship, love and support through his illness.
Calling hours for Rob will be held on Friday, December 17, 2021, from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM at the Cournoyer Funeral Home, 33 River Street, (Rte. 202) Jaffrey, NH 03452. All are welcome.