SOUTH BEND —
Robert R. Boits, 66, South Bend, passed away at 8:29 p.m. Saturday, April 13, 2013, at his residence.
Born Feb. 17, 1947, in South Bend, he was the son of Richard and Margaret (Flack) Boits. On July 8, 2006, he married Nita (Hollis) Grabner at Fernwood in Niles, Mich. She survives.
He was a 1964 Adams High School graduate. Mr. Boits was a lifelong resident of South Bend.
He was a U.S. Air Force veteran, serving from 1964 to 1968. He entered the Air Force at the age of 17 and started as a basic medic at Grissom Air Force Base and then continued his education to be a physiological specialist trainer.
He attended the Indiana Police Academy, where he graduated second in his class. He started as a rookie in 1970 in the jail division and continued to work his way up the ranks from patrolman to sergeant. By 1975, he was promoted to captain of the Civil Division. In 1986, he was appointed chief of the St. Joe County Police Department. He served for 13 1/2 years, making him the longest-standing chief of St. Joe County. After retiring from the department, he became safety director at Herrman and Goetz from 1999 to 2010. In 2011, he was again appointed to the St. Joe County Police Department as assistant chief.
He attended St. Joseph Catholic Church in South Bend.
He was a member of FOP International Chiefs Association and the Indiana Sheriffs Association, where he was on the legislative committee. He was also a former member of the Indiana Chiefs of Police and Moose Lodge.
Survivors include his wife, Nita M. Boits of South Bend; mother, Margaret Boits of Walkerton; son, Richard Boits (Emily) of Indianapolis; daughters, Brittany Bass (Kevin) of Pooler, Ga., and Niki Boits (Andrew Benton) of Fredericksburg, Va.; stepson, Andrew Gerndt of South Bend; and sister, Barbara Calloway (Larry) of Black Mountain, N.C. He is also survived by two grandchildren, Logan and Preston Bass; sister-in-law, Mary Boits; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father, Richard Boits, and a brother, Michael Boits.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Sheriff Mike Grzegorek and the St. Joe County Police Department for their kindness, support and brotherhood during Bob’s illness.
“To John, Dean and Patty, we consider you God’s angels for being here from the very beginning and then every step of the way. Whether you sent a card, made a phone call, ran an errand or came to visit with Bob to brighten his day, to all you good friends, we sincerely appreciate all that you have done and continue to do. God Speed, Bob. Love You Always.”
Graveside Services will be 1 p.m. Thursday at Kistler Cemetery, on 575 West in Royal Center, with Chaplain Steve Coyle officiating.
Please join us for a celebration of Bob’s life from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at the South Bend Firefighters Union Hall, 4025 Lincolnway West, South Bend.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Center for Hospice Care, 111 Sunnybrook Court, South Bend, IN 46637.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Harrison-Metzger & Rans Funeral Homes & Cremation Services, Royal Center.
To sign the guest book or leave an online condolence for the Boits family, visit www.ransfuneralhomes.com.