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home : obituaries : obituaries August 27, 2015

1/29/2013 7:30:00 AM
Dr. Robert Hildebrand, Ph.D.

Dr. Robert Hildebrand, Ph.D., 79, passed away peacefully from natural causes, with his family by his side, on Saturday afternoon, Jan. 26, 2013, at St. Joseph's Hospital in Marshfield.

He was born on Dec. 22, 1933 in Rhinelander, the youngest child of Dorothy and John Leo Hildebrand.

He attended grade school and high school in Rhinelander, graduating in 1952 with four letters in tennis and a state championship to his name.

He then graduated from UW-Milwaukee with a degree in Economics and a U.S. Army Commission as a 2nd Lt.

He served in Germany for 4-1/2 years where he studied and became fluent in German and on the German-Czech border in Army intelligence during the Cold War. As he liked to say, "the last war we won."

He then attended UW-Madison, earning a master's degree in Foreign Affairs. He then worked at UW-Milwaukee as a training officer for the Peace Corps where he trained volunteers to serve in Kenya, India and Brazil. Upon receipt of a NDEA Fellowship for Doctoral Education, he attended the University of Pittsburgh where he earned a doctorate in International and Development Education in 1969. From 1969 to 1998 he taught at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville in the School of Education. In 1998, he retired and returned to Rhinelander.

Dr. Hildebrand married Mary Jennie Shupe in 1961. They have three sons: Robert P. (Kim Urso) Hildebrand of Island Lake, Ill., John Leo Hildebrand of Rhinelander, and Michael E. (Adria Ashby) Hildebrand of Edwardsville, Ill. They are loving grandparents of five grandchildren, Zac, Amy, Cassidy, Macy and Abby, who are welcomed to their home on Black Lake as often as possible to learn the joys of nature and quiet in the woods and no TV (except Packers games).

Robert is survived by his wife, Mary, his sons and their families, his sisters, Betty Dickson of Rhinelander and Peg Eilers of St. Paul, Minn., and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers, Thomas Hildebrand and Richard Hildebrand, both of Rhinelander; and his sister, Jane Metcalf of Seymour.

Robert will be remembered by all who knew him for his love of the political discourse - he was a lifelong Democrat - the wonderful wines he made and his general goodness and kindness. He was a wonderful man, father and friend.

A visitation will be held on Saturday, Feb. 2 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Hildebrand-Russ Funeral Home. Memorials may be made to the food pantry.

Related Links:
• Hildebrand-Russ Funeral Home

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