Robert George Hitt, formerly of Boulder Junction, died Aug. 26, 2013, in Atlanta, Ga. He was born in Shaker Heights, Ohio, Sept. 22, 1924, son of George and Marie Mihalek. The family moved to Munster, Ind., when Robert was about five, his parents divorced and Marie married Homer O. Hitt sometime later.
Robert attended and graduated from Hammond High School where he earned a letter in swimming and tennis. As a youth he was very active in Scouting and was the first Eagle Scout in Munster. He organized the first Cub Scout pack in Munster. He remained active in scouting for many years, serving as a camp counselor, Cub master and Scout master.
Robert graduated from Purdue University in 1948 with a degree in forestry, married Valeria J. Nichols, and joined the staff in the genetics department at the University of Wisconsin. He worked in a program of applied forest genetics and earned a master’s degree in genetics. He remained at the university until 1961. He worked for Fields Educational Corps for a short time, did some consulting work and then joined the U.S. Forest Service in 1963 as a forest geneticist at the seed laboratory in Macon, Ga.
He continued as a forest geneticist serving 13 southeastern area states until 1968. During this period he also attended Georgia State University where he was awarded an MBA in June 1968. He then transferred to the Forest Service’s Washington, D.C., offices. Returning to the Atlanta office in 1971, he served as a staff director in the area office where he continued to work until his retirement in 1982.
He and his wife, Val, lived in the Boulder Junction area for many years.
Robert was a member of the Presbyterian Church where he was elected to Deacon and Elder positions in several churches. Bob was a member of the Community Church in Boulder Junction.
Bob and Val had four children, Carolyn J. Patton of Monticello, Ga., Roberta A. Miller of Atlanta, Ga., Dr. John A. Hitt of Stillwater, Minn., and William O. Hitt of Atlanta, Ga. In addition they had 11 grandchildren, Wesley Miller of Atlanta, Ga., S. Alexander Miller of Washington, D.C., Nicholas Miller of Atlanta, Ga., Spencer Miller of Atlanta, Ga., Jeffrey Patton of Toronto, Canada, David Hitt of Brookings S.D., Kirtley Hitt of Lacrosse, Minn., Nathaniel Hitt of Stillwater, Minn., Nicholas Hitt of St. Cloud Minn., Alexandra Hitt of Stillwater, Minn. and William Hitt, Jr. of Atlanta, Ga. Bob had a brother, William, of Lakeland, Fla., now deceased, and two step-sisters, Shirley Bartelt of Mulberry, Fla., and Vickie Johnson of Spokane, Wash.
Bob is survived by his wife, Valeria J. Hitt, residing in Atlanta, Ga.
During his life time he was active for many years in Scouting, church work, the North Woods Ski Club, the Institute of Learning in Retirement, and served as the first president of the Boulder Junction Area Historical Society. His interest in woodcarving prompted him to organize with Ron Hive a Musky Area Woodcarvers Club which held weekly carving session in both Boulder Junction and Arbor Vitae. He organized and conducted annual Musky Area Woodcarvers Workshops which attracted more than 100 carvers from eight states for the three-day sessions.
Bob’s request was for memorials to be addressed to Habitat for Humanity Northwoods Wisconsin, P.O. Box 552, Minocqua, WI 54548.