Robert Massey, a 25-year employee of the Sanitation Division of the city Streets Department, an Army veteran of World War II and a devoted family man who loved to play the father figure for his 40 nieces and nephews, died Aug. 17. He was 89 and lived in West Philadelphia.
"Rob was a wonderful brother and friend," his family said. "He lived a full independent life. He was a 'Man Among Men.' "
Called "Massey" by his fellow workers, Rob was a "proud, loyal, dependable" city employee. "He was respected for his powerful work ethic," his family said. He was a loyal member of AFSCME District Council 33.
"He was loved for the kindness of his heart," his family said. "He enjoyed family events, and loved to dance. He never missed a family reunion."
Rob was born in Philadelphia to Robert Massey and the former Anna Lou Coley. He attended Overbrook High School and later received a diploma from an upholstery school for veterans.
He joined the Army in 1943 and served in an engineers battalion in Europe and the South Pacific. He received the Philippines Liberation Ribbon and two bronze star victory medals.
After his discharge, he went to work for the city. He retired in 1979 after 25 years of service.
Rob was married for about 30 years to the former Marion "Babe" White. She died in 1994.
He was a member of American Legion Post 292 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3090. He also was a member of Mt. Olive Baptist Church.
"Robert was a meticulous dresser who loved good clothing, shoes and caps," his family said. He was a devoted Phillies fan and often got out to games in his younger years.
He and his longtime companion, Ora Crawford, also enjoyed traveling the country.
He is survived by five sisters, Dorothy Price, Josephine Jones, Annie Ford, Mary Broadnax and Eva Mae Johnson; and three brothers, Burrell, Elijah and George. He was predeceased by two brothers, Roman and Bernard Massey, and a sister, Essie Harris.
Services: 11 a.m. Saturday at Evelyn Graves Ministries, Long Lane and Whitby Avenue, Yeadon. Friends may call at 6 p.m. Friday at Yarborough & Rock Funeral Home, 1001 N. 63rd St., and at 9 a.m. at the Evelyn Graves Ministrries. Burial will be in Mount Peace Cemetery.
Contact John F. Morrison at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-854-5573.