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1978 Robert 2024

Robert I. Brainard III

August 15, 1978 — February 4, 2024

Boulder Creek

Robert I. Brainard III, previously of Rumson, died instantly on February 4th in a shocking accident at his home in Boulder Creek, California, during the significant storms that evening.


  Affectionately known as Bobby or Bob, he graduated from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional HS ('97) and Goddard College (’02) and was awarded an honorary degree in sociology after a post-graduate residency at The Dublin House. Bobby was loved by everyone who met him. A consummate musician with a flair for guitar, he could be found strumming with his buddies down at the Victory Park gazebo for hours in his youth. After his early years on the East Coast, he headed West with hope, energy, and opportunity and found a fantastic life surrounded by an incredibly artistic, loving, caring, and funny family community. Those East and West Coast friendships, along with the deep bonds of his college friends, meant the world to him, of course, in addition to his fur babies. He loved his job as a lab technician with SC Labs.  After many years living in downtown Santa Cruz, CA, he migrated up Route 9 into an enchanting home in Boulder Creek, surrounded by the majestic Redwood Forest. 


 Bobby is predeceased by his fur baby Sophie, his father, Stephen R. Brainard, and his mother, Carol M. Brainard, this past fall.  He was able to see them both before their deaths.  When he traveled back for their funerals, he saw and enjoyed every sibling, nephew, aunt, uncle, cousin, and numerous friends on his trips back East. Little did we know it was his glorious “Farewell Tour” (in Grateful Dead font). He is survived by his sisters, Maryann Baret (Scott), Lucy Brainard, Margaret Brainard-Bland (Peter), six nephews, Alex, Max, Nolan, Ryan, Sean, and Richard, an extended Brainard and McDonough clans, and a loving family of friends both on the West and East Coasts.  His fur baby, Mrs. Ears, has been adopted by his close friend. 

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 Although his shocking death is not readily accepted, we find solace in a fantastic tribute through his good friend Jonah’s words:  “Cheers to you, Bobby! You got taken out by an ancient tree in a historic storm after an incredible life! I’m proud of you, buddy! And thank you for giving us a departure that’s not dark and sinister which has been so the norm. Instead, an incredible tree that fought as hard as you to follow its own destiny wanted a partner in time for eternity. I will see you in every tree from now on!”  


A short ceremony will be held at 11:30 am at Victory Park, his favorite place on the East Coast, on an aptly chosen date, March 17th, with a celebration of life afterward. Sláinte. 
To send flowers to the family in memory of Robert I. Brainard III, please visit our flower store.

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