SunBird Personalities

Bob and Ann Neuman

Bob and Ann Neuman

Bob Neuman

On a cold January 3, in 1932, Bobby Neuman was born to blue-collar parents in Shelbyville, Indiana. “We lived there with my grandparents due to the hardships of the Great Depression. Three years later my brother arrived.”

He attended St. Joseph grade school until ninth grade then moved to Shelby High. He played some basketball, tennis and was a pitcher for the baseball team. Graduation was 1950 and Bob enrolled at Ball State University. “After graduation I entered for three years, the United States Air Force as a second lieutenant and finished with a rank of captain.”

While at Ball State, he met a lovely music major named Ann Cain who agreed to be his wife.

“We married in December 1954 and immediately headed for Tucson and flight school. Next stop was Panama City, Florida, for radar training.

We lived in a cottage on the Gulf of Mexico for three months.”

In the spring, Ann remained while he left for a two year assignment in Japan on the snow island of Hokkaido. “I was a Combat Aircraft Controller with a crew of sergeants, airmen and some Japanese. We guarded the air space of northern Hokkaido. Russian territory was close by including Siberia, Kuril Islands and Sakhalin. Over 10 feet of snow covered the ground for eight months. Our radar facility was carved into a large mountain. I ran the intercepts against the Russian planes when they invaded Japanese territory.”

After six months, Ann joined Bob and later, their first daughter of three was born.

Discharged in 1957, he obtained a MA degree in Guidance and Counseling. “I taught English, history and coached in Indiana and Scottsdale, AZ for 22 years.” Then he became an Indianapolis real estate broker for another 22, retiring in 1994. With their parents deceased and their daughters reasonably settled, Ann and Bob moved to SunBird in 1999.

“Sadly, in 2011 we heard the word one never wants to hear. Ann had cancer and on April 5, 2013 Ann passed away.”

“As for writing, I began by writing numerous short stories. For many years, I have done articles for the Shelbyville News, the Indianapolis Star, our Arizona Republic, the Sun Lakes Splash, but mostly for our SunBird News, an excellent monthly newspaper. Currently, I do three articles in each edition and at times more. Since 2005 I have done biographies of our residents. I also write a column called “This, That and Other Stuff” which enables me to write whatever pops into my head.

In addition, I do the Sunbird Community Church article.”

“I agree with what nearly every resident says, and that is that Arizona and SunBird are fabulous places to live.”