Robert (Bob) Dean Bantz, 66, passed away peacefully at home December 6th 2021 with his wife and family by his side.
Bob was born on January 27, 1955, at the Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul, IL to Donald Bantz Sr. and Donna Vail (who survives). He was preceded in death by Donald Bantz Sr. (father), Karl Johnson (brother) and James (Jim) Johnson (stepfather).
He is survived by his loving wife of 37 years, Sandra (Rasmus) Bantz; son Bradley (Amber) Bantz, son Christopher Cody-Bantz and daughter Kaitlin Bantz; siblings Debbie (Paul) Jones, Jamie (John) Stanley, Donald Bantz Jr. and Gail Jones; and two grandchildren Ayden and Brynnlie.
Bob graduated from Mahomet-Seymour High School in 1974. During high school he was on the track and cross country teams. He earned Varsity letters and was captain of the teams. He held several school records, some which still stand. In 2018, he was inducted into the Mahomet-Seymour Cross Country Hall of Fame.
He then worked at the University of Illinois for 32 years. He retired in 2008 which gave him years to enjoy his many passions.
Bob was a Scouter for over forty years. He held positions such as Pack 25 Cub Master, Troop 25 Scoutmaster, and Crew 25 Associate Advisor of Mahomet. He has also held several positions for the district and council levels in Prairielands Council with one being Council Advancement Chairman where he mentored and approved Eagle Scout Projects. He has received the Scoutmaster Award of Merit, District Award of Merit, Woodbadge, and the Silver Beaver. He was a member of the Order of the Arrow Illini Lodge 55 and earned his Vigil Honor for years of exceptional leadership and service to the Lodge. He also worked on staff for the 2010 and 2013 National Jamborees. You could often find Bob on scout outings at Camp Drake.
Bob loved spending time with his family, camping, hiking, and fishing. Bob was also known as the “M&M man” by many. He loved collecting anything to do with M&M candies. He loved going with Sandy on flea market and antiquing trips in search of the elusive piece that he didn’t have to add to his collection.
Bob and Sandy enjoyed crafting together which led them into a woodworking/crafting business for over 20 years. Bob was a life-long Minnesota Vikings and Los Angeles Dodgers fan. He always lived life to the fullest. He will be greatly missed by family members, friends, and the Scouting Community.
Visitation will be Saturday, December 11 from 2:00 – 4:00 at Blair-Owens Funeral Home in Mahomet. In accordance with family wishes, Bob will be cremated. A Celebration of Life will be held at Camp Drake at a later date.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (pancan.org), Carle Cancer Institute in Urbana, or to Sandra Bantz for use towards a future Scouting memorial/scholarship in Bob’s name.