Bob passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on July 14, 2012. He was 89.
He was born in Corpus Christi, Texas on July 23, 1922 to deaf parents, Larry Lawton Norman and Toolie Eugenia Neill Norman. Bob was raised in Garner, Texas during the ‘Great Depression. Working in the fields and doing the farm chores never seemed to bother him, as he loved the outdoors. He sold Cloverine salve, as well as garden seed; in winter, trapped for furs—always pushing to succeed. He made things for play that interested young boys, which eliminated the need to have store-bought toys. Failure to do what was expected of him was never his style; He would work even harder, going the extra mile.
His career was interrupted by WWII, where he served as a fighter pilot in the Marine Air Corp in Okinawa. After his service he promptly resumed his pursuit of a long overdue degree in Petroleum Geology at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas.
He was forever showing his love for his friends, family and the community. He was fortunate to work at the Texas School for the Deaf, and while there had the opportunity to meet and work with Helen Keller.
It has been repeatedly said that “Bob Norman, was one of the kindest and most thoughtful individuals one could ever meet.”
Bob worked with Shell Oil, Arabian Oil Company and Delhi Taylor Oil Company. His initial assignment with Delhi Taylor was the drilling of oil and gas wells in Kansas, New Mexico, and Utah. He came to Moab in 1954. While working for Delhi Taylor he was involved in the drilling, coring, and exploration of every deep potash test holes within Paradox Salt Basin.
In 1964 Bob became the manager of minerals for Buttes Gas & Oil Company. He became internationally recognized as an expert on the Salt Facies of the Basin and honored as the U.S. member of the steering committee for the International Conference on Saline deposits sponsored by the National Academy of Sciences – National Research Council. He was responsible for the discovery of the Cane Creek potash deposit and the developmental geology of the Seven Mile and other potash properties.
Bob played a major role in the Grand County Community serving as the Charter member of the following: Moab Rotary Club 1965 and President, 1980-81, Moab Elks, Moab Chamber of Commerce and the Community Baptist Church. Bob served on the following boards of directors in his tenure: Utah Board of Oil, Gas and Mining, Interstate Oil Compact Commission, Bureau of Land Management, Nuclear Waste Committee, Rotary International, Moab City Councilman, Utah Geological & Mining Survey under Governors Clyde, Rampton & Matheson, Grand County Water Conservancy District, Grand County Economic Development, Governor’s Nuclear Waste Repository Study, and Paradox Basin, Utah.
Bob also was instrumental in development of the Moab airport and the small tracts of Kayenta Heights. At age 69 he built King World Waterpark for the enjoyment of the Moab community.
Bob is survived by his wife Diane Norman and their three children: Kimberly of Salt Lake City, Utah; Robert Norman Jr. (Chara) , Tiffany, Justin of Moab, Utah; Eric Norman of Sandy, Utah; Bob was preceded in death by son Jeff and daughter Christie. Other grandchildren: Jarrod, Kelly, Ciara, Antonius, Karolina, Aprelle, Jessica and Marcela.