Remember the phrase “let somebody else do it”
"Volunteers are Somebody! Somebody who cares, Somebody who devotes time without pay, Somebody who praises all, large or small and Somebody who has a common bond with others to make things better." ( Self )
Bob Costello was Somebody!
Robert “Bob” Costello.
Classification: Embalming Service.
Joined the Winchester Rotary in 1961 and was a member until he retired to Melvin Village New Hampshire in the 90’s.
Bob served as President of the club in 1987-1988 and received a Paul Harris Fellow Award in 1989. Although Bob had retired from Rotary, Rotary was always near and dear to him. He was proud to have been a Rotarian, no strike that, a Winchester Rotarian and his Past President Pin and his Paul Harris Pin were proudly displayed on his lapel even at the end.
His nickname was “Digger”. The handle was given to him by his friend and fellow Rotarian Arthur “Red” Rand, former club secretary and bulletin editor, “Red” was also the club jester. The name came from The Life of Riley radio show and the character Digby “Digger” O’Dell the friendly undertaker.
You could not know Bob and not like him. The fellowship of Rotary was central to him. He was a quiet man and with the ever present pipe he had an almost professorial bearing. However one could detect that mischievous glint in his eye. He had a wee bit of the Irish humor in him albeit dry.
An example of his wit happened in the last week of October 1996 when his friend “Red” Rand passed away. The Rand children went to Costello’s to make the final arrangements for “Red”. There intent was to have the viewing on Tuesday and the funeral on Wednesday. Bob in his quiet manner convinced the Rand children to have the wake Wednesday and the funeral on Thursday. It wasn’t until the ride home that Red’s family broke into laughter when they realized that Bob had swayed them to have the funeral on Halloween. The only more appropriate day would have been April Fools Day.
Bob was unassuming and reserved, but he had the uncanny knack of moving others to willingly follow his lead. He led this club with distinction, pride, vigor and determination. “It’s all in the details” could well have been Bob’s personal motto. That penchant for perfection was in every task he confronted. Although he was soft spoken he could communicate and engage the membership. He had a keen sense that the rewards of being a Rotarian far outweighed the demands of the commitment. He lived the “Four Way Test” as a Rotarian and took great pride in letting that motto guide him in his profession and his daily life.
He was a great family man and deeply religious. During his final years he battled Alzheimer’s but with the strength, love and support of his amazing friend, confidant and wife Lil, and with her boundless love, Bob was able to live out his days with as much dignity and grace as was humanly possible.
Bob’s wish for Rotary was to pass on to those that follow a club that had served others and one that would perpetuate the objective of Rotary “Service Above Self”.
Thank you Bob for your service and goodbye dear friend.
Rotary Club of Winchester
September 15, 2011