TWIN FALLS — Describing Bob Rynbrand in one word is almost impossible.
If you ask people whose lives he touched, they will tell you that he was passionate, dependable, loyal, understanding, empathetic, selfless, caring and funny.
“To paraphrase Nat King Cole – Unforgettable,” said his wife Christine.
Although U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer, Kiwanis Club Member, Rising Stars Therapeutic Riding Center volunteer, and Hospice Visions Veteran-to-Veteran volunteer also portray the Magic Valley resident who died in 2019, his preferred title was a little less conventional.
“Bob, with his wry smile and warm sense of humor, insisted his title had changed from U.S. Navy chief petty officer to chief scooper at Rising Stars,” wrote Kiwanis Club member Revis Turner. , in a speech. “I don’t wonder which title he treasured the most.”
Dozens of people gathered Thursday to dedicate a new stone and flagpole to Rynbrand outside the Rising Stars building.
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“Passionate servant,” reads the stone.
He spent 75 years serving others, Turner wrote. He shared his gifts and talents with vulnerable children and adults facing difficult circumstances.
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“It was very important to him to ‘give back,'” Christine Rynbrand told the Times-News in 2019. “He felt that the reason he was on earth was to help his fellow man.”
Rising Stars Therapeutic Riding Center is a non-profit organization, specializing in providing beneficial riding activities and equestrian assistance to children and adults with cognitive and physical disabilities in south-central Idaho. Rynbrand was one of the most reliable volunteers, director Marni Porath said.
“The things that were close to his heart, he was completely invested,” Porath said.
Kiwanis member Steve Westphal said Rynbrand was his best friend and would smile from heaven when the pole was unveiled.
“He taught me to take life with a grain of salt,” Westphal said, “and to worry less and smile more.”
Westphal, a veteran, said Rynbrand was always available to speak to a service member.
As a volunteer or on the move, he always wore his veteran cap. Rynbrand previously told the Times-News he did this to make sure any veteran would know they could talk to him and know what he had been through.
Those close to him hope the mast will have a positive impact on the community.
“May we, as family, friends and community, be inspired by our service by seeing this Bob Rynbrand flag pole,” Turner wrote.
Flagpole Dedication to Bob Rynbrand