Robert J. Bartkus, 70, of Watertown, passed away unexpectedly from complications during heart surgery on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 at Waterbury Hospital. He was the beloved husband of Marilyn (Simmons) Bartkus.

Bob was born in Waterbury on July 28, 1949, son of the late John and Florence (Rukauskas) Bartkus. He grew up in Oakville and spent many summers at Lake Winnemaug during his younger years. He was proud of all his family and was the greatest dad in the whole world to Stephen and Allison.

Bob attended local schools and drove tractor trailers for several different companies over the years. He was a U.S. Army veteran of the Vietnam War from 1969-1972, serving for one year in Quang-Tri Province at Camp Carroll. He was extremely proud of his Lithuanian heritage and was a member of the NRA, Bristol Fish & Game, Oakville VFW Post 7330 and the Knights of Lithuania.

Bob enjoyed spending time outdoors and took great pride in his yard and gardens. He had an endless interest in discovering and learning about local history. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, hiking, kayaking, metal detecting, photography, clamming and relaxing on the beaches in Rhode Island and playing slots at the casino. Most of all, he loved racing his car on the weekends. Bob was fun-loving, had the biggest heart, the best sense of humor and the deepest love for his family and friends. He showed us all how to be kind and live life to the fullest.

Besides his wife and children, Bob leaves behind to cherish his memory, his sister, Evelyn and her husband Alan “Kip” Sirois, his niece Darlene Kobylenski and her huband Dan, nephew Alan Sirois Jr and his wife Lori, sister-in-law Debbie Carlotto, niece Lauren Carlotto-Thayer and her husband James, cousins, extended family members, and many dear and close friends. Bob will be deeply missed by all who knew him including his Dover Drag Strip racing family. His cat, Tony, will miss being spoiled and going on walks with him in the yard.

Arrangements: Robert’s funeral will be held on Wednesday, July 1, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. from Chase Parkway Memorial/The Albini Family Funeral Home, 430 Chase Parkway, Waterbury, CT to St. Joseph’s Church for a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 a.m. Burial with full military honors will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Watertown. Calling hours will be held on Tuesday evening from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions can be made in Robert’s memory to:

The Watertown History Museum

P.O. Box 853

Watertown, CT 06795