DAVENPORT — Robert Dale Van Hecke, 87, of Davenport, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017, at his home surrounded by his family. Robert “Bob” was born Feb. 19, 1929, in Davenport, the son of Camiel and Bessie (Salzman) Van Hecke.
He began his military career at the age of 7 by being the youngest boy, at the time, to attend Roosevelt Military Academy in Aledo, Illinois. Although that lasted only a year, he later followed it up with service as a paratrooper in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. Bob was a patriot and a true veteran who loved his country.
On Valentine’s Day 1953, he married his sweetheart, Joan Marie Roeder of Evansville, Indiana, and had six children. A hardworking, well-loved man, he spent the next 30 years working at Alcoa in Bettendorf, to support his family. His co-workers referred to him as, "Hooker" (with a nose like that) and will always remember him with his great sense of humor. A true friend to all and a father who was loved and respected by his children, he will be dearly missed.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date this summer. Online condolences may be left to the family at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Surviving loves of his life are his wife, Joan, and five children, Steve, Tommy, Joe (Donna), Lori McFadden, all of Davenport; and his daughter, Deb Eastwood (Phil), Grenada, West Indies. He is also survived by his sister, Doris Mae Tritz, Remsen, Iowa, and by numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who he would call, "all my little Van Heckes."
Bob was preceded in death by his parents and siblings, Tom, Dodie, Irene, and Charlette; his son, Mike; and grandson, Joe-Joe.