Obituary: Robert Shannon McLandress | The Daily Courier

Robert Shannon McLandress was born April 27, 1935, to Gertrude and Smith “Mac” McLandress in Appleton, Wisconsin. Sadly, he passed away on June 13, 2022, from the complications of getting old.

Bob spent the last 40 years of his prosperous and creative life in Prescott, Arizona.

His survivors include Barbara McLandress (wife), John McLandress (son) and family, Andrew McLandress (son) and family, Billy Roach (step-son) and family, Kim Roach (step-daughter) and family, as well as numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents, sister, and two grandsons.

“Bob” was an accomplished architect, who designed buildings in New York City, San Francisco, and throughout Wisconsin and Arizona. He was a proud graduate of Hebron Academy in Maine. He attended Brown University in Rhode Island, and then Columbia University in New York City where he received his Master’s Degree in Art.

Ol’ Bob was a nice combination of serious, funny, hard-working, creative, and kind. He was a true Renaissance Man.

He worked with clients to create designs for both public and private structures. He puzzled night and day to make the spaces fit the expectations of his clients while making sure the buildings were both well-designed and appropriate for the surrounding landscape.

No matter where he lived, Bob gardened, growing cucumbers, beans, and peppers by the bushels. He grew anything the land would accept. If Bob lived in a house, he planted fruit trees near it. He had several small orchards growing pears, plums, apples, apricots and peaches. He was passionate about his orchards. Most recently, he had several prolific peach trees in Chino Valley, whose produce he would sell at the local Farmer’s Market.

Bob was intellectually curious. He obtained a grant from the National Endowment of the Arts in the early 1970s to study the Native American tribes of the Anasazi. He wanted to know why some tribes created and built their homes in selected caves. His research helped solidify the theory that some of the Anasazi built their pueblos on the side of cliffs, such as the Town of Montezuma’s Castle, in order to passively heat and cool their homes.

Bob entertained his family with one-liners until the very end. Just a few months before he died, he posed for a picture with his son, Andrew. When Bob and his son were reviewing the photo, Andrew said, “Well, I guess this is what I am going to look like in another 30 years.”

In his deep and gentlemanly voice, Bob responded, “If you’rrrrre lucky!”

His love of food and cooking was an important way that Bob connected with others.

One of his son John’s favorite memories of his Dad happened when Bob was visiting John and his friends in Hood River, Oregon. Bob convinced a pal to sing a rendition of “Volare” in the streets downtown as the price for a piece of baklava cheesecake. John can still see the performance happening on the sidewalk: his dad watching the spontaneous performance with a goofy grin on his face. It seemed like Bob loved the entire moment: the silence, and being included in the group of his son John’s friends. All for the price of baklava cheesecake.

Bob also made his own cheesecakes. He decorated these works of art with brilliant green kiwis, bright red strawberries, triangles of yellow pineapple, and sometimes blaze orange fresh peaches.

The color combinations were eye-catching and almost made it a sin to eat such creativity. His cheesecake art earned him first prizes at the County Fair and second prize overall for baked goods at the Arizona State Fair. Bob was proud of this accomplishment and delighted in sharing his cheesecakes with his grandchildren for birthdays.

In addition to cheesecake art, Bob’s creative work extended to tying fly-fishing flies. He invented the “Shazam” fly. It was a small fly with bright orange and bright purple fluffy feathers, the colors of the Phoenix Suns.

Bob tied this fly as sort of a joke. He only used it when no other flies were attracting trout. Ironically enough, he caught many fish on the Shazam: on lakes in the White Mountains of Maine, ponds near Williams, Arizona, and rivers and streams from Alaska to Chile.

When consulted, the words Bob’s family used to describe him are “creative”, “kind”, “passionate”, “fly fisherman”, “part-time orchardist”, and, “A Foodie.” All these descriptions are apt words to describe our Bob. Another word to describe him is…missed.

Information provided by the family.