Robert Albert Hanauer, 86, of Albany, passed away peacefully at home March 22, 2021.

Robert, who went by “Bob,” was born in Albany June 9, 1934, to Rosella (Sperl) Hanauer and Albert Hanauer. He attended Holy Family Elementary School and graduated from Albany High School. After high school, he enlisted in the United States Army and served in Korea. Upon discharge, he returned to Albany and married Lois Meyer of St. Anthony July 28, 1962.  Together, they had three children,  Nancy, Robert “Fezzy” and Lori.  He worked as a mechanic in his family’s Pontiac-GMC dealership until 1988. The business continued on as Bob Hanauer Garage until his retirement in 1994.  

Bob was a talented “maker of things.” He restored old cars, trucks and boats. He carved dozens of fish decoys and invented his own version of a tied fly that he used for ice fishing. He could fix just about anything and had a couple workshops, one in his shed in the backyard and another in a tiny space in the house. In his workshops, everything had a place and everything was in its place.

Bob was also a lover of “toys,” especially motorcycles. Nothing gave him more freedom and joy than to get out for a few days on his Gold Wing.  He made an annual trip to Sturgis for Bike Week for more than 30 years.

Bob served on the Albany City Council for 23 years. He was also elected mayor on a write-in ballot in 1991, a short-lived stint as he preferred to be a behind-the-scenes contributor, participating on both the planning commission and the economic development authority board.

To those who didn’t know him, Bob probably came off as a gruff guy, but to those who knew him, they knew that was just a hard shell. On the inside, he was a softie. He was once heard referring to himself as a “tree-hugger and bunny-lover.” Yes, you read that right.

Bob is survived by his wife, Lois of Albany; his three children, Nancy Hanauer (Mitch Culbreath) of Minneapolis, Fezzy (Patty) Hanauer of Albany and Lori (Ken) Wambach of Albany; four grandchildren  Mercedes (Trevore) Klein, Ben Hanauer, Mackenzie Wambach and Madison Wambach; two great-grandchildren Alice and Gabriel; and his sister, Patricia Bordewich of Cottage Grove.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Rosella and Albert Hanauer, and his infant brother, Albert.

A Mass of Christian Burial was March 27  at Seven Dolors Catholic Church in Albany.

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