Bob attended the Roberts School, then El Dorado Springs School before finishing his high school years in Schell City, one of the graduates of the Class of 1953. After school, Bob worked at the Harwood Elevator, fanned and did chores for Floyd Phillips. He also worked for a time for the MKT Railroad as a fireman and also in the Kansas City Railroad yards near the Downtown Stockyards.
On Sept. 20, 1958, Bob was united in marriage to Shirley Florene Phillips in Miami, Okla., and to their union three daughters were born. Just four days after his marriage to Shirley, Bob was deployed to Korea while serving in the U.S. Army. He was honorably discharged in February 1960. After settling back at home Bob began farming again and was owner/operator of Flake Dozer. He and Shirley raised the girls and were always involved in community and area activities. Bob was a member of the First Baptist Church in Schell City; the Schell City Masonic Lodge No. 448 AF & AM; Nobles of the Mystic Shrine -- Abou Ben Adhem of Springfield; Scottish Rite of Freemasonry of Fort Scott, Kan.; Blue Mound Grange; El Dorado Springs OES No. 148; and dual membership with Nevada OES No. 53; Fraternal Order of Eagles of Nevada; and was a past member of the Schell City Lions Club; past 4-H leader; and past Schell City school board member. Each year the Abou Ben Adhem Shrine sponsored a circus in either the Springfield or Joplin area. Bob and Shirley purchased tickets each year to give to local and area children as Bob felt it was of great importance that children get to visit a circus at least once in their lifetime. Bob's hobbies included playing cards, going to basketball games, going to the races, riding around the Schell City Conservation Area, and watching the "Price Is Right" and the "Wheel of Fortune." He also enjoyed the area softball leagues, coaching and playing on a men's team named the "Bums." Earlier in his life, Bob also was a race car driver in Missouri and Kansas.
Survivors include his wife Shirley, of the home in Schell City, who always called him Flak'o; three daughters, Cherie Roberts and her husband, Donnie, of Walker; Linda Majors and her husband, Robert, also of Walker; and Bobbie Jo Harms of Bartlett, Kan.; six grandchildren, Walter James Koshko and his wife, Cheyanna, Broc Edward Koshko, Robert Chad Majors and his wife, Jill, Bradley Eugene Majors and his wife, LouAnn, Heather Dawn Harms, and Jake Douglas Harms; two great-grandchildren, Judd Weston Koshko, and Madyson JaiAnne Majors; several nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends. Bob was preceded in death by his parents; one brother, Dale C. Flake; and one sister, Rebecca Fern Gerster.
Graveside services with interment were held at 3 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 17, 2005, at the Green Lawn Cemetery in Schell City with Bro. Gene Gray officiating. Musical selections were provided by Paula Newman and Rick Newman. Pallbearers were Walt Koshko, Broc Koshko, Brad Majors, Chad Majors, Heather Harms, Jake Harms, Robert Majors, and Donnie Roberts. Bob had wanted to recognize all of his friends and neighbors in this area and the surrounding communities as his Honorary Pallbearers. Memorial contributions are suggested to the Walker First Responders, the Northeast Vernon County R-1 Athletic Department, or the Northeast Vernon County R-1 Ag Department. Arrangements were entrusted to the Lewis-Hoagland Funeral Home in Schell City.