Robert Thomas “Bob” Gardner Jr., 55, of Carolina, passed away unexpectedly in the line of duty as a firefighter for the Richmond-Carolina Fire District. He was the loving husband of Christine Ruth (Chalifoux) Gardner. Born in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, on February 20, 1967, he was the son of Elizabeth Ann (Hemond) Bray and Robert J. Bray. In addition to his wife and parents, he leaves his children, Derek O. Gardner (and wife Amanda), Adam T. Gardner, and Kevin R. Gardner (and wife Rayanne). He is also survived by his grandson, Dominic T. Gardner, his brothers and sisters, several nieces and nephews, and his beloved dog, Turbo.
Bob was a truck driver his whole life, even before he had his driver’s license. He worked at various trucking operations over the years, where he met many of his lifelong friends. Bob was dedicated to his volunteer work with the fire department. He taught members how to drive and was someone that every member could rely on, in and out of the fire station. From 2004-2010, he volunteered at the Charlestown Fire Department, where he attained the rank of captain. From 2008 until his death, he volunteered at the Richmond-Carolina Fire Department, where he had recently stepped down as deputy chief. Bob was very involved with the town of Richmond and took great pride in helping his community. Also, he was a dedicated member of the Carolina District Board.
Bob enjoyed classic movies like Smokey and the Bandit and listening to classic rock like Molly Hatchet. He was an avid car enthusiast who worked on anything with a motor, especially motorcycles. But most of all, Bob enjoyed spending time with his friends and family, especially over a morning breakfast or a Sunday dinner at the fire station.
Bob will be greatly missed by his family, friends, and the community which he loved being part of. His family will be forever grateful and appreciative of all the love and support that has come our way. Words cannot describe how thankful we are for all the memories, laughs, and stories that have been shared with us about Bob.