Bob Downs

ROBERT (BOB) F DOWNS, age 71, took his final journey which led him to Heaven on April 12, 2022. He suffered with Alzheimer’s for many years. Bob was born September 4, 1950 in Morenci, AZ, but the family moved to Detroit, MI before his first birthday. He attended Houghton Elementary, Murphy Junior High and Redford High School all in Detroit. He graduated from Central Michigan University, Mt Pleasant MI where he earned a B. S. with a major in art and a psychology minor.

He reunited with his future wife, Kathy, while at CMU. Bob and Kathy grew up across the street from each other until Kathy moved out of the country for a few years with her family. Bob later earned an M. A. from Wayne State University, Detroit MI. He worked several jobs over the years before he became an adjunct art professor at Schoolcraft College and also taught at Henry Ford Community College, and Oakland Community College. He taught art appreciation and other art classes. He loved to share his knowledge of art with his students and once a year gave them a tour of the Detroit Institute of Arts so they could earn extra credit. This was done completely on his own on weekends. He also was a volunteer at the DIA.

He was an artist with a style completely his own. He painted on canvas on cut out shapes, drew pictures, made assemblies with his marbles and miscellaneous other objects and often dressed in costume to match the art. He did some glass blowing and pewter castings along the way. He was a participant in juried and non-juried art shows and also had several one man shows of his work. He had an unusual sense of humor and an imagination bigger than the world.

Bob loved to play the guitar and was self-taught, to work on his art, to travel to numerous states for vacations where they camped in a tent, and to take long walks and bike rides. He collected handmade marbles and Native American Indian pots, miscellaneous other Indian objects, antique toys and bought dolls and stuffed animals for Kathy’s collections. He owned an eclectic collection of music and loved to listen to it when he worked. He enjoyed hiking the mountains in the Lake Placid, NY area and even climbed Mt. Wrightson once or twice.  He was a serious fan of the Detroit TIGERS and went to many games. He even drove home to Michigan from Bar Harbor ME in two days to attend a 1984 World Series Game.

After Bob and Kathy were married in 1973, they lived in various suburbs of Detroit. They were snowbirds in Green Valley for two winters before moving here full-time in 2012. They were familiar with the area as Bob’s parents had lived here for many years.

Bob will be remembered as a funny, intelligent, reserved, nice, gracious and artistic person who never wanted to cause any ripples for anyone at any time. Bob is survived by his wife, Kathy, of almost 49 years, his brothers, Tom and Hal, two sisters-in-law, Merrill and Bev, brother-in-law, Rick and various nieces, nephews, and other family members. He was preceded in death by his parents, Joe and Harriet, his in-laws, Bob and Rose, and by infant daughter, Sarah.

A Celebration of Life was held at Desert Hills Lutheran Church in Green Valley AZ - April 30, 2022
Interment took place at the Columbarium at Valley Presbyterian Church in GV- May 2, 2022

More information can be found at
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be sent to the Alzheimer’s Association or place of your choice.

Green Valley news - obituary listed on 4-24-2022

Tommy and Bobby - 1952

Two Boys and Grandma -1954

Harold, Bobby, Tommy - 1960

Bob HS Graduation -1968 (with his Parents: Harriet & Joe) and Brothers



Bob's "Twin" 2003


Flying Fire truck at Concourse D' Elegance

Watch out for the vicious dog!!!

Horse From Another Dimension

2013 - AZ

2014 - AZ

Kartchner Caverns


25th Anniversary 1998


Bob and Sarah 1990

Sarah's Tree

Bob Loved Bow Ties

Cottage 1993

Always work to be done!

Loved Camping a Couple Weeks a Year - 2002

Michigan House 2002

Bob did this landscaping - 1993

Is it level yet! Working on a Heart Shaped Hedge

We certainly got our snow in MI

Lots of Snow in Michigan

Moved to Sunny Arizona 2012, picture 2015

Joe his dad and Bob -1988

Tom (brother) and his wife Merrill, Harriet (mom), Bob 2009

1998 Bob's Family

Steve (best man at wedding) & Bob 25 years later -1998

Aunt Marge - 2016


Cousin Bev, Bob, Cousin Nile

Jeremy, Bev, Grandpa Bob, Kathy (wife), Bob - 2009

Cousin Halbert, Uncle Selvin, Bob -2009

Bob, Cousin Harland - 2013

Bob, Cousin Jim with Indian pot - 2014

Bob and Rory (great niece) 2003

Molly, Bob, Emily - yes they are twins even though they have different birth dates! You are not seeing double. 1985

Bob, Hanna, Nick feeding cheese balls to Uncle Bob

Hanna "borrowing" ice from Uncle Bob - 1993

Drew, Bob, Gwen, Kathy, Nick, Hanna - 1994

Bob, Nick, Gwen - Coooold Thanksgiving Day Parade in MI early 2000

Bob and Charlotte - 2011

Jackson (buddy), Bob - 2011

Kathy, Abby (honorary God child), Bob - 2006

"TWO" Bob painted this 1969

"Everyone Wins" - Participation Assembly by Bob - 2008

Bob as Carney

Bob deep in thought while painting - 2018

"The Aladin's Lamp" by Bob (2010 to 2013)

"Circus" by Bob

"Who In The Hell Are You" by Bob

"Pontius Pilot" by Bob

Art Proffesor Bob while still in Michigan 1999

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