Robert M. Eaton, Jr. (Bob/Bear) born July 2, 1942, in Eunice, LA died January 30, 2023, in Houston, TX, after 40 days in the ICU at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center, due to complications following open heart surgery. He was surrounded by his family.
Bob joins in eternal rest with his parents Robert Eaton Sr. and Nelwyn, niece Chelsea along with her dad Tritos, and Godfather Uncle Duck. He is survived by his loving wife of 51 years-Marylee Morgan Eaton, children Jack, Erin, and Sean, daughter-in-law Fami, grandchildren Lina and Aydin, sister Mary Ann Thurmond, nephew/Godson Sebastian, and numerous extended family from the Guillorys, LaFleurs, and Bonnettes.
His children and grandchildren were proud to call him Dad/Daddy/Papa, looking to him for his guidance, wisdom, and love. He taught them the values important to him: honesty, kindness, respect, integrity, and compassion.
Education was essential to Bob. He graduated from Our Lady of Fatima in 1961 and the University of Southwestern Louisiana in 1965 in Lafayette, LA. He moved to Houston in June 1965 and was employed as a Chemical Engineer at Monsanto in Chocolate Bayou and Texas City, followed by positions at Kocide Chemical Plant and Kennecott Copper. Moving into the food
industry, Bob joined Maxwell House Coffee in 1969 where he met his future bride-to-be, and then Uncle Ben’s Rice Company. Bob then ventured into managing professional trade organizations in 1985. He owned Jackson & Jackson for ten years and was skilled at managing large groups, speaking engagements, and trade shows for non-profit organizations CAI and IREM. He later joined PCMI as a project manager and office manager for several years, retiring in 2010.
Bob was a voracious reader and was always coming up with tidbits of trivia. He loved life, people, dancing the Cajun two-step, and laughter, delighting in entertaining kids with his magic tricks. He happily officiated at three family weddings, served on a MUD district board, and the Ashford West HOA board. He enjoyed sampling new cuisines, cooking his famous spaghetti and Mediterranean green beans, and loved traveling. His favorite cruise was a Mediterranean voyage out of Barcelona and into Venice. Visiting family in England, Wales, Spain, and Turkey brought joy and treasured memories. He enjoyed exploring different countries, cultures, and food. He indicated he wanted to take the family to Arkansas, so they will make that trip in his memory.
Bob was diagnosed with ET in 2014 and Myelofibrosis- a form of blood cancer in the bone marrow, in 2017. He participated in three clinical trials in the Leukemia Unit of MD Anderson under the guidance of oncologist Dr. Srdan Verstovsek. We offer our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to Dr. V. and his staff. Dr. Verstovsek writes: “Mr. Eaton was very dear to our hearts. He will be missed very much. Myelofibrosis is a terrible disease and he, with strong family support, has battled it for many years. His participation in clinical studies has provided benefit to him, and will most definitely help others as well now that we know what to expect from these treatments based on his experience.”
It is with deep gratitude that we also thank Dr. Lauren Barron and Dr. Marc Moon, cardiothoracic surgeons at Baylor St. Luke’s Hospital in Houston, who performed the bypass on 12/24 and led entire teams of doctors each morning in setting out plans for Bob’s treatment. The family also expresses our appreciation for the Cooley ICU Blue Team nurses who provided round-the-clock care, concern, support, encouragement, and genuine kindness for “Mr. Bob.”
Please consider donating much-needed blood to MD Anderson. Call 713-930-3664 or 713-792-7777.