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Published: Saturday, 4/7/2001

Retired Bellevue decorator believed in doing job right

BELLEVUE, Ohio - Marshall D. “Bob” Bollenbacher, retired president of the former Universal Decorating Service, Bellevue and Columbus, died Thursday in Bellevue Hospital. He was 82.

Mr. Bollenbacher died of complications of a stroke he suffered in July, his wife, Molly, said. He was a patient in the hospital for five days.

For 28 years, Mr. Bollenbacher headed the family's decorating firm. He designed and built displays and parade floats. The company decorated conventions, the Ohio State Fair, and the Miss USA Pageant in Huntington, W. Va., his wife said.

The firm worked in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Kentucky, and West Virginia, and Mrs. Bollenbacher, who worked alongside her husband, said the pace was grueling. Mr. Bollenbacher retired in 1982 and sold the business in 1983. It closed a few years later.

“When you were in the business we were in, you had no social life,” Mrs. Bollenbacher admitted. “You had no time to belong to anything.”

Mr. Bollenbacher graduated from Bellevue High School in 1936. He studied chemical engineering for 31/2 years at Ohio State University, but ceased his studies to marry on Oct. 14, 1941.

He was called for military service after the United States entered World War II, but he was rejected because of poor eyesight.

He was a civilian chemical inspector for the Navy in Barberton, Ohio, for about a year, then he returned to Bellevue and worked for the family's decorating firm .

Mr. Bollenbacher became a stickler for scheduling, hard work, and keeping his word.

“He enjoyed working with his hands. He believed in doing a job right. He wanted everything done just so, and he wanted it done on time, ” his daughter, Rose Marie Greene, said. “I admired the things he could do. He was handy.”

Surviving are his wife of 59 years, Molly; sons, Richard, Ned, and Marshall “Butch” Bollenbacher III; daughters, Mary Ann Martin and Rose Marie Greene; stepsister, Linda Jennings; 17 grandchildren, and 21 great-grandchildren.

Memorial services will be at 10:30 a.m. today in Zion Lutheran Church, Adams Township. Arrangements were handled by Auxter Funeral Home, Bellevue.

The family requests tributes to the church roofing fund.



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