Robert (Bob) H. Hallam was the epitome of a stand-up guy. I’ve always heard that phrase and it wasn’t until deep reflection on his life did the true meaning resonate with me. There are so many adjectives and superlatives to describe him, but a few really characterize him best in my view. Honest, caring and thoughtful – he always had time for others; putting his interests last and taking a sincere concern of others’ wellbeing. He was genuinely selfless. He had a natural curiosity and was always seeking knowledge. From his comprehensive Ivy League education to his daily reading routines, you could count on Bob to be one of the most informed and smartest guys in the room. His love of sport kept him active and engaged with his dear friends on the court or the course. He was more of a social-sport and just enjoyed being outside with his friends and family. So as we consider his most outstanding qualities, the list has to include selfless, smart and sporty.
In my eulogy I explain how Bob was selfless and that the experience of having joined our family of three rambunctious teenage boys must have been the biggest test of will and patience a single man could endure. He had his hands full with our wonderful, yet demanding mother Paula, but he managed their relationship with great caring and benevolence. Bob was always the guy to put others first; whether it was sharing a section of the newspaper, choice of a restaurant or a movie, it seemed he was amenable to whatever others preferred. He was the first guy to get up and do the dishes and when it came to having your back, he was the one you could count on – literally day and night.
Bob’s insatiable appetite for knowledge projected him into a life-long quest for learning and experience. He was smart; receiving multiple degrees from Penn and later going on to be one of the top marketing consultants in the world. He was always quick to share very cogent advice on a variety of subjects from business to personal relationships. His successful career enabled him to retire early and enjoy his passions of reading and giving back to causes and communities that were important to him. On multiple occasions he developed turnaround strategies for local non-profit organizations which lead to exponential growth. Even up until his last days, he was working on plans to reinvent the marketing plan for the cancer hospital in his home town.
Sport was another passion that drew Bob’s interest, but more for the social aspects. While most play sport to exercise their competitive needs, Bob’s preference was to spend time with good friends and family. While most know him to be a golfer, his true favorite was tennis. With an unconventional slice forehand and backhand, Bob would command the center of the court with his large wingspan and nag his opponent into submission with chop shot after chop shot. On the golf course, he had an uncanny way of getting around the greens. Not very long off the tee, he developed quite a short game which would always keep the team in holes. Bob liked to win but it wasn’t in the ruthless competitor style of most athletes. He was just as happy to take runner up in the consolation round as he was to payout a double press on a Nassau. He was a true sport, a sporty guy indeed.
These are just a few thoughts on a guy one could write a book about (and may do so some day). As I sit here alone with a whirlwind of experiences with Bob flying through my head, I can already envision the many chapters of amazing everyday stories that touched the lives of so many he cared for. We will miss you dearly.
The Hallam Financial Model