Cover photo for Robert Joseph Skriba's Obituary
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1938 Robert 2023

Robert Joseph Skriba

March 11, 1938 — June 22, 2023

 

      Robert Joseph Skriba, age 85, of Elsie, Michigan, passed away on Thursday, June 22, 2023, surrounded by his family.

     A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Cyril’s Catholic Church, Bannister, Michigan on Tuesday, June 27, 2023, at 10:00 A.M., with Rev. Fr. Raj Bandaru presiding. Burial will take place immediately following at Riverside Cemetery, Elsie, Michigan. Visitation will be held on Monday, June 26, 2023, from 2:00 to 4:00 P.M. and 6:00 to 8:00 P.M. with the Rosary prayed at 7:00 P.M. at Smith Family Funeral Homes, Elsie Chapel.

     Robert was born at home on March 11, 1938, the first child of Joseph and Jane (Matousek) Skriba. He spent his childhood in the Elsie area where he enjoyed spending time with his siblings and his large extended family. Upon turning 18 years of age, he enlisted in the US Army in the fall of 1956. After completing bootcamp, he trained to be a medic and was stationed in Korea. He was honorably discharged in 1958. He was a proud Veteran.

     In 1964, Robert and his father formed Skriba Farms, which later expanded to include a third partner, his brother, Rick. Together, the three of them successfully operated the dairy and cash crop farm. He thoroughly enjoyed spending time on a tractor and combine. After 53 years, Robert retired from active farming in 2017, but remained a lifelong farmer at heart.

     Robert met Charlene Arens at a local roller skating rink in 1958. They were married on August 20, 1960, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Westphalia, Michigan. Together, they welcomed four children: Bob, Gary, Jennifer and Matthew. Robert and Charlene taught their children the value of working on the farm and caring for one another. They traveled all over the country in the family motor home, but also enjoyed vacationing in Hawaii, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Lichtenstein. Robert and Charlene celebrated 35 years of marriage until Charlene passed away in 1995.

     On February 19, 1999, Robert married Helen Schneider at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in St. Johns, Michigan. They enjoyed their golden years together, attending family functions and supporting their grandchildren. They celebrated 23 years of marriage together.

     Robert loved his family, farming and his Catholic faith. He was proud of his Czech heritage and especially enjoyed eating homemade kolache. Robert also enjoyed listening to polka music and playing the accordion in his younger years. He had a keen interest in technology and, in the 1980’s, he self-programmed the family’s first personal computer. He also enjoyed wood working where he crafted gifts for his family. Robert was a kind hearted, thoughtful, and generous man. He always looked upon life with optimism and offered his children and grandchildren invaluable advice. He lived a life dedicated to his faith. He will be greatly missed by his family.

     Robert is survived by his wife, Helen. He is also survived by his children: Robert and Judy Skriba; Gary Skriba; Jennifer and Tom VerBeek; grandchildren: Andrew, Ashley, Tyler, Owen, Luke, Lauryn, and Addelyn; and great-grandchildren Kaia, Gryphon and Darrin. Additionally, he is survived by his step-children: Steve Schneider, Sue Glover, Mike (Kelly) Schneider and Jon Schneider; and siblings: Jean (John) Dvorski, Pat Ladiski, and Richard (Billie) Skriba.  Robert was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife Charlene, his son Matthew, granddaughters: Petra and Stella, and his great-grandson, Dayton.

     Memorials may be made to JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes) or St. Cyril's Catholic Church. Online condolences can be sent to www.smithfamilyfuneralhomes.com. The family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes, Elsie, Michigan.

     

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Monday, June 26, 2023

2:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Smith Family Funeral Homes Elsie

221 E. Main Street, Elsie, MI 48831

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Rosary

Monday, June 26, 2023

Starts at 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

Smith Family Funeral Homes Elsie

221 E. Main Street, Elsie, MI 48831

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

St. Cyril's Catholic Church

517 E Main St, Bannister, MI 48807

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