PRETTY LAKE — Robert A. Pruitt, of South Bend, Indiana, fought until there was no fight; he passed away on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020.

Affectionately known as "Papa", Bob was born on Sept. 5, 1940, in Frankfort, Indiana, to Virgil and Irene (Phillips) Pruitt. They preceded him in death.

He was a proud Hoosier, having earned a bachelor's and a master's degree at Indiana University in Bloomington and later another master's degree from the University of Notre Dame.

Bob served his country in the U.S. Marine Corps and the world in the Peace Corps in Oruro, Bolivia, where he met his late wife, Mary Kingdon.

Nothing gave him more joy than his family, and his life was full of love and adventure, especially his later years, with his grandchildren.

While we will remember his aphorisms such as, "much obliged" and "that's like the garbage can calling the lid dirty", his insights about what's important in life are left with all of us blessed to know him. He truly was one of a kind; unconventional, empathetic, quick-witted, kind-hearted and he had a tremendous sense of humor. He also absolutely killed the Twitter game with more followers than his grandkids combined.

A beloved, father, grandfather, friend, and companion, he kept his circle small and loved those in it fiercely and unconditionally. He had a profound sense of right and wrong, always defended the little guy, and was never afraid to speak truth to power. He will be greatly missed.

Bob was preceded in death by his daughter, Cathy; and his brother, Jim Pruitt.

He is survived by his son, David (Kristin) Pruitt, of Granger; and daughters, Kristine Pruitt of Mishawaka and Eileen (Ryan Battista) Pruitt, of South Bend; as well as eight beautiful grandchildren, whom he cherished, Matthew, Mary Cate, Brendan and Anna Pruitt, Dylan Piazzoni, Aidan, Nora and Keira Battista; and his sister, Sandy (Maury) Waugh, of Fort Wayne.

Private family services will be held on Friday, Nov. 27, 2020, at Palmer Funeral Home-Hickey Chapel, 17131 Cleveland Road, followed by interment at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Buchanan, Michigan, with military honors.

In lieu of flowers, the family's preferred memorials are to The American Heart Association, by mail at 3816 Paysphere Circle, Chicago, IL 60674 or online at or The Foundation of Saint Joseph Health System, COVID-19 Response Fund, by mail at 707 E. Cedar St. - Ste. 100, South Bend, IN 46617 or online at

To share a remembrance of Bob or to offer condolences to his family, please visit

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