Robert ‘Bob’ McKinley passed away on August 5, 2023 at the age of 85 after a long, courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease. He was born in 1938 to William and Evelyn (Grant) McKinley in Cambridge, MA. A third-generation Cantabrigian, Bob graduated from the former Cambridge Rindge Technical High School in 1955. He then proudly served in the United States Air Force.
A talented and passionate athlete, Bob excelled in hockey, baseball, and basketball. A cherished memory was an invitation to try out for the Boston Bruins with former coach Milt Schmidt. During his time in the Air Force, he traveled to air force bases where he played in baseball games that engaged and entertained the troops. He continued to play on men’s softball teams and hockey leagues for decades.
He was equally as passionate about his fifty years of coaching softball and hockey, which included coaching roles with Cambridge youth hockey, Winchester, MA girls’ softball, the Regis College and Lasalle University women’s softball teams, and the Cambridge Fire Department softball team.
As an operations manager at Allied Van Lines Moving Company, he secured a contract to send the Boston Red Sox equipment to spring training camp in Florida. He segued into the role of dedicated firefighter with the Cambridge Fire Department where he served for more than 25 years. A longtime resident of Cambridge, later in life Bob moved to Winchester, MA where he resided for nearly thirty years.
Bob was happiest in the sun on a beach. He also enjoyed golfing and drawing. He taught himself to play ukulele and harmonica, which delighted his granddaughter.
He is survived by his sons David and his wife Patricia of Winchester and Stephen and his partner Kristin Snyder of Dracut from his first marriage to the late Susan MacLeod; and daughters Lauren McKinley of Norwood and Kristen Gray and her husband Geoffrey of Scottsdale, AZ from his marriage to the late Lois Trebino; his sister Donna Greco of Newburyport; and two grandchildren Lily and Tatum. He is preceded by his sister Karen McHugh.
The McKinley family would like to thank the staff, nurses and doctors in the memory unit of the Bedford VA Hospital for their empathetic and excellent care of Bob for nearly eight years.
A wake will be held on Thursday, August 10 at Keefe Funeral Home, 5 Chestnut St., Arlington, MA from 4-7pm. A funeral service will be held at Keefe Funeral Home on Friday, August 11 at 10am. Burial will follow at the Wildwood Cemetery in Winchester, MA.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s’ Association, 309 Waverley Oaks Rd, Waltham, MA 02452.