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1501 W. Lexington Ave.
Independence, MO 64052
Phone: 816-252-7900

Harland "Bob" M. Hawley

Wednesday, February 20th, 1929 - Monday, January 7th, 2019
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The Honorable Life of Harland Maynard Hawley
1929 - 2019

Harland Maynard Hawley of Independence, Missouri, passed away on January 7th, 2019, at age 89. Born February 20, 1929, in Oakland, California, to parents Gerald and Viola Hawley, Harland was one of three siblings. When he was a youngster, his older sister Darith nicknamed him “Hunk” because he carried a few extra pounds. While he eventually grew tall and lean, the nickname stuck, and he was affectionately referred to as such by members of his immediate family for many years. He would, however, introduce himself as Bob, the name he preferred over Harland.

Bob Hawley was a man of great character. He served his family and community honorably as a husband, father, church pastor, entrepreneur, and a principal in the recovery of the sunken 1856 steamboat Arabia. Considered a national treasure, the Arabia’s collection of more than 200 tons of recovered artifacts is displayed in Kansas City, Missouri, at the Arabia Steamboat Museum and stands as a lasting legacy of the determination and self-confidence for which Bob Hawley was so well known.

His gentle and kind demeanor was magnetic. He was a perceptive and thoughtful man whose wise council was highly regarded. Clever in the way of mechanical ingenuity, he was able to build or repair most any piece of equipment and made his living doing just that. To provide for his young and growing family, he began working from the trunk of the family auto repairing refrigeration equipment to supplement his income from his employment as a tool and dye maker. Within a few years, he was able to buy a work truck and proudly placed a sign in the front yard of his home, advertising his repair business. To this day, the Hawley Service Company sign stands at the end of his long, shaded driveway for passersby along the blacktop road to see.

Bob Hawley was a man who loved the adventure of the outdoors. He honored the grip of an honest handshake, content to work all day for a fair wage, and quick to give of his abundance to his church and those in need. With the realization that he was experiencing symptoms of the fatal ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, Bob continued to set a strong and unwavering example to all who attended his personal care throughout his final chapter of life.

He was preceded in death by his son, Greg L. Hawley, who passed in January 2009. Bob Hawley is survived by his wife, Florence Hawley, son, David Hawley, and daughter, Rita Scherer, their spouses, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

For those who knew him, this passage goes a long way in describing the life and character of Bob Hawley: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Thursday, January 10th, 2019 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm
    Thursday, January 10th, 2019 5:00pm - 8:00pm
    Steamboat Arabia Museum
    400 Grand Blvd.
    KANSAS CITY, MO 64106
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Friday, January 11th, 2019 | 10:00am
    Friday, January 11th, 2019 10:00am
    Speaks Suburban Chapel
    18020 E. 39th St.
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    High Priest Dennis Clinefelter
  • Interment

    Mound Grove Cemetery
    1818 North River Boulevard
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


Donations are being accepted for: Steamboat Arabia Foundation.

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Private Condolence
Terry and Dennis Clinefelter sent flowers to the family of Harland "Bob" M. Hawley.
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Judy and John Midgorden

Posted at 11:29am
Our love and prayers go out to the entire Hawley family. We feel it a privilege to have known Bob Hawley. We knew him as a quiet, helpful man whose smile mirrored the kindness he expressed. Bob gave of himself for others and was a credit to his church and community.

Larry Garrett

Posted at 05:53pm
Hawley family, I was saddened to hear about the loss of Bob. Over the years I have driven by your home thousands of times admiring the beauty of the house and grounds, and stopped by a few times to discuss hvac issues, or something Bob had for sale setting out by the road. I always found him very pleasant to talk to and generous with his time to visit for a few minutes. I once told him that as a teenager I had been in the house a couple of times with Rita and other friends, He smiled and gave me a quick update about Rita and his other kids. I could tell by his voice how proud he was of his kids. You have my condolences, and my hope for good things in your lives going forward. LARRY GARRETT

Chuck Kent

Posted at 04:16pm
Kristen, family & friends. After reading the exciting Arabia story and the history of Bob's endeavors of during his life it's obvious and to great to see a person who enjoyed pursuing his dreams, challenges, and most of all life. His passage was especially motivating for following the belief to explore, dream, and discover. NOW! It's clear to see he's an honorable man and has supported family and friends by touching their lives being by there to help and mentor. A true roll model and mentor. I offer my deepest condolences but more importantly the important thing to do is celebrated his life and accomplishments, He will live forever in your hearts. Chuck Kent

Kathy RoCha

Posted at 01:39pm
I worked at The Arabia Steamboat quite a few years ago. It was the best experience of my life. The Hawley's are great people. Sending prayers for your loss. Mary Chaney

Kim and Jason Bergman

Posted at 07:46am
Sending the entire Hawley Family our love and prayers for strength and healing during this time. ~The Bergman Family (Jason, Kim, Maxwell & Claire)

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