Celebration of Life

Fri. Oct. 13, 2023
11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Beresford Funeral Service

13501 Alief Clodine Road
Houston , TX 77082.
Fri. Oct. 13, 2023
11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Beresford Funeral Service
13501 Alief Clodine Road
Houston , TX 77082.
In Memory of
Robert "Bob" Edward Harms

Robert “Bob” Edward Harms passed away at his home in Houston, TX at the age of 72. He was born on December 2, 1950, in Red Bud, Illinois to Paul Henry Harms and Aurelia Emma (Luebkemann) Harms.

Bob grew up on a farm in Baldwin, Illinois where he developed a strong work ethic which he carried with him throughout his life. He graduated from Sparta High School in 1968 and went to work for the Sparta Printing Company until entering the U.S. Army in 1973. He served in Germany and was honorably discharged in 1975. He then continued working at the Sparta Printing Company until moving to Houston, TX in 1976. It was there that he met and married Rhonda (Weaver) Harms. The two remained married until 2005 and had two children. 

After working in the retail electronics business, Bob began his career in the fitness industry in 1985, working in retail sales for Busy Body, where he would spend the next eleven years. In 1996, he moved into wholesale, working in product sales and development/design for several companies including USA Sports/TROY Barbell, TKO, Precor, and the Abs Company. After a lucrative 36-year career, he retired in 2021.

Bob was spirited and outgoing and never met a stranger. His ability to crack a joke and fill the room with laughter was one of his best qualities. He most enjoyed spending time with his children, Kelly and Matt, whether it was going on annual trips to watch the Houston Open golf tournament or summer fishing excursions in Illinois. He was an avid sports fan, always cheering on his home teams, especially the Houston Astros. 

Bob is survived by his children, Kelly (Joe) Handy and Matt (Erin) Harms, grandchildren Kyla, Holden, and Jace Handy, brother Richard (Gloria) Harms, and sister Jeanne (Robert) Randall. He is preceded in death by his parents. 

A celebration of his life will be held on Friday, October 13 from 11 am-1 pm in the Chapel of Beresford Funeral Service in Houston, TX.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made in his name to the Wounded Warrior Project. 

Charitable Donations may be made to:

Wounded Warriors
4899 Belfort Road, Suite 300, Jacksonville, FL 32256. Website Link


Message from
Paul and Christa, Marathon Fitness
Thu, 10/05/2023

To the extended Harms family, we are so sorry to hear of Bob's death and we want to express our most sincere sympathies to his family during this difficult time.

Over the course of his career, spanning a 32-year period we were fortunate to intersect with Bob on five different occasions. First, Bob was a fierce competitor when he led BusyBody of Texas. They were everywhere and Bob was connected and revered by all the biggest suppliers due to their success. He built a company that really had a tough wall to break through.

The second time was when Bob established the “TROY Barbell” brand from scratch to a national and international player. There Bob was a trusted supplier and also established himself as an industry innovator. Our third time was soon thereafter when Bob helped establish an entirely new company, TKO Sports which was one of the first to catch the early adoption of Aerobic and Strength equipment together. It was at this time our new company started and became a distributor and reaped many valuable lessons from Bob about how to run day-to-day operations, and the pitfalls to avoid.

Early on when we were struggling with space and manpower, Bob stepped up gave us warehouse space to store equipment and refused rent of any kind; moreover, he provided us the selling terms we needed. Without the generosity, it would have been almost impossible to be where we are today celebrating our 20 year anniversary.

The fourth time was when Bob was hired by PRECOR as a distributor manager. Being we were in his backyard, again he took a special interest in helping and promoting our business through his contacts. He really cared about how we and the team were always doing, professionally and personally.

The last and final time was distributing some of Bob’s inventions at ABS Company, which went from a small home products company to an international brand known for innovation in strength. Customers love the products and they are installed somewhere to this day every week by our company.

He will be remembered as one of the smartest industry movers and a respected veteran who outworked all of us. He made many great contributions to our company and helped it move forward in numerous ways--- his extra effort and care will not soon be forgotten! He embodied what it meant to have class and stand behind what he said.

Christa Davis and Paul Croegaert
Marathon Fitness