Robert Gene Rutledge (Cotton) passed from this earth on October 8, 2015 in the presence of his loving family. The cancer that he battled since 1982 in one form or another, finally claimed his life.
He was born in Aspermont, Texas on February 23rd, 1933 to Elizabeth & Roland Rutledge. He was the youngest of four boys. Surviving him is his wife of 52 years, Melba, his only child Amber, (Kevin Kuhn), grandchildren Kristyn Fox, and Ryan & Jason Kuhn. He loved them deeply. Also surviving are his sister-in-law, Rosemarie & Ralph Ortiz; brothers-in-law, William, Frankie, & David Schmitt; nephews, Eddie & Michael Rutledge; godson, Patrick Rutledge; nieces Theresa Whitney, Tammy Hall, Gayla Laechlin, and Jackie Harrell.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers, J.R., Marvin, & Eddie, in laws Katherine and William Schmitt, sister-in-law Gail Rutledge, and son-in-law Richard Fox.
Bob served 2 years in the United States Army in Alaska just missing going to Korea by 2 months. He was a Supply Sergeant and was Ammo Chief of the 120mm Anti-Aircraft gun. Bob graduated from Eastern New Mexico University with 2 degrees in marketing and business. Upon graduating, he went to Farmington as the Chamber of Commerce manager, then onto the Corporation Commission where he had control of the airlines and pipelines.
In 1961 he worked as a right-of-way negotiator at the New Mexico State Highway Department for 30 years, purchasing property for the building and improvement of the roads & highways for the State. He later became Head of the Beautification Department (Lady Birds project).
He was a member of the Elks Lodge, the American Legion, and the Order of the Eagles, all of which he enjoyed immensely. When he was Leading Knight at the Elks in 1977, he won the first office chair State Trophy ever in the history of the Santa Fe Elks Lodge. He was very involved, and he loved to help the officers at the Elks; he loved to help everyone. Later, he became Chaplain at the Legion and had the members come together and sing, whether they wanted to or not. They ended up enjoying it.
He was a devout Catholic and was the Supreme Grand Knight of the altar boys and soloist as a member of the choir. He was an accomplished swimmer and diver on the one-meter and three-meter boards, and was also a lifeguard and certified safety instructor. Additionally, he loved hunting, fishing, golf, socializing and most of all - football and the Dallas Cowboys.
Bob would go to immeasurable lengths to help those he loved, regardless of the situation. The positive qualities he possessed were numerous- the most prominent being his bright smile, his always-vibrant personality, and his constant cheerful whistling. He was honest, had no enemies, and was generous to a fault. But most of all, he was truly a good person.
And although he is gone, Robert Gene Rutledge will never be forgotten.
A Rosary will be recited at 5:30 pm Sunday, October 11, 2015 at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 9:00 AM Monday, October 12, 2015 at St. John The Baptist Catholic Church. Interment with full military honors will be at 12:45 PM Monday , October 12 at Santa Fe National Cemetery. Pallbearers will include Ralph Ortiz, Ron Riechman, Florencio Varela, Eddy Rutledge, Tom VanHese, and Robert Clifford.
|Date of Birth
|Date of Death
||October 8th, 2015