Dr. Robert W. Hall
Dr. Robert W. Hall Age: 88 • Burlington Dr. Robert W. Hall passed away unexpectedly, but peacefully on January 6, 2017. Bob was a respected scholar and professor at UVM for over 40 years, but more than that, he was a wonderful and cherished husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather and a soon-to-be great grandfather. Bob was born in Arlington, MA on April 6, 1928 to Samuel and Agnes Hall, joining his brothers Harry and John (John survives him). Bob was a Harvard man, through and through, graduating Magna Cum Laude with a BA in Philosophy in 1949, and then going on to get his Masters and PhD degrees there as well. In his later years, Bob enjoyed wearing his "one of a kind" Harvard knit cap. Bob also served his country in the US Army during the Korean War as part of the Counterintelligence Service. Bob taught at the University of Vermont from 1958-2002 as a professor of philosophy. He served as chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religion in the 1960s and 1970s, and was later conferred as the James Marsh Professor of Intellectual and Moral Philosophy. He is known for scholarship in ancient and modern philosophy, religion and aesthetics. A leading authority on Plato, Bob wrote four books, dozens of articles, and served for decades in an editorial capacity for Apeiron's International Journal for Classical Philosophy as well as the Journal of the History of Philosophy. Along with many honors, he was featured in the Who's Who Directory of American Scholars. Even after becoming Professor Emeritus in 2002, Bob continued to write articles and contribute to books on philosophy and aesthetics. Bob married Mary Starritt, the love of his life in October 1958, four months after they first met. Bob and Mary were married for 49 years, until Mary's death in December 2007 due to complications of Alzheimer's disease. Even as Mary slipped away, Bob's unwavering love and support kept them united. Bob and Mary's devoted partnership served as a beautiful example for their six beloved children and their spouses: Christopher (Katie), Jonathan (Lisa), Pamela (Cortland Johnson), Timothy (Caroline), Jennifer (Patrick Wright), and Nicholas (Sara). Bob's 12 grandchildren also loved being with their Grandpa, and he loved seeing a whole new generation growing up and spending time at the family home. Bob was always the calm center in the joyful chaos that was characteristic of the Hall household, with six kids running around amidst the veritable menagerie of dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, ducks, iguanas, and even a piglet that Mary rescued. Bob said he handled all the craziness by "just taking it philosophically." Bob delighted in being a Grandpa, and it was not unusual to see him lying on the floor in his tweed jacket and tie playing blocks with his grandchildren when they were younger. Most recently, Bob found such joy in his youngest granddaughter, 4-year-old Auden, who lived with Bob along with her parents. He also enjoyed being able to spend so much time with grandchildren Chase and Katie, who live in Vermont. Bob was limited to a wheelchair for the last two years, but that didn't limit his ability to stay a loving family man and scholar. He maintained the same indomitable spirit, intellect, consideration, love and humility that marked his life. While he lived to be just 3 months shy of his 89th birthday, to his family, he is simply gone too soon. We will never forget the examples of love, integrity and compassion that he taught us, just by being who he was. Special gratitude goes out to Camillia, as well as the caregivers at Armistead who helped Bob over the last couple years; their compassionate care was much appreciated by Bob and the entire family. In lieu of flowers, if desired, memorial contributions can be made in Bob's name to a cause that you're passionate about—like Bob would. A celebration of Bob's life will be held at 4PM on Thursday January 12, at the College Street Congregational Church, 265 College Street in Burlington. Arrangements by Elmwood-Meunier. Visit burlingtonfreepress.com/obituaries to Express condolences and sign the guest book.
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