Robert Joseph Farrell, Jr., “Bob,” “Bobby,” “PopPop,” of Mechanicsville, MD, formerly of Camp Springs, MD and Oakley, MD, passed away peacefully on May 22, 2020 at his residence. He was born October 9, 1937, in Oakley, MD and was the son of the late Estelle M. Farrell and Robert J. Farrell, Sr. Bobby was the loving and devoted husband of Luvia Valencia Farrell, whom he married on January 9, 1960, in St. John’s Church, McLean, VA.
Bobby is survived by his children, Robert “Bobby” Farrell (Betsy) of Mechanicsville, MD, and Victoria Lynn Foutz of Toms Brook, VA; five grandchildren, Brittany Bowman (John), Michael Foutz (Tracey), Joseph Foutz, Robert “Drew” Farrell, and Emily Farrell; along with six great-grandchildren, Natalie, Camdyn, Autumn, Joseph Robert, Madison, and Serenity; siblings, Agnes “Cookie” Hayden and Clyde Farrell (Jeryle) and his nephew (although more like a brother), Mike Lacey. He was preceded in death by his brother Francis Farrell, his sister Louise Lacey and brother-in-law Stevie Lacey, brother-in-law, Elbert Hayden, and beloved son-in-law Michael Foutz.
Bobby grew up in the Seventh District off of Oakley Road. As a child, he helped his family in the tobacco fields and with all other aspects of farming. He decided around the age of 17 that tobacco farming was not for him, so he left home and headed for Washington, DC to find his way in the world. Bobby found his first job on the docks of the DC waterfront as a longshoreman. Around the age of 20, he was then hired at Acacia Life Insurance Company, located at 51 Louisiana Avenue, NW, in Washington, DC, as an elevator operator. He moved up the ranks at Acacia and obtained his steam engineering license and eventually became the building superintendent and Vice President of Building Operations. He spent 42 years at Acacia, retiring in 1998, only to be called back numerous times to continue to care for the building and grounds he so dearly loved.
Acacia’s lawns and landscaping rivaled the grounds of the nearby U.S. Capitol Building as Bobby meticulously cared for them during his years of employment. He would stay overnight in the building during snowstorms to make sure the grounds were cleaned and maintained to ensure everyone’s safety and, on his own initiative, would hire the men from the local homeless shelter to help him clear and remove snow. Bob was never above rolling up his sleeves to give his crews a hand at repairs or maintaining the building’s machines. He took pride in his job and it showed with the many awards he received throughout the years.
Around 1958, Bobby’s life would be changed forever when he met the love of his life, Luvia Amalia Valencia, a native of Guatemala, who also worked at Acacia. They married in 1960 and enjoyed a beautiful, happy, and joyful marriage of 60 years, never going to bed mad at each other. Bobby and Lou traveled daily to Acacia for work together for the next 40 years. After their retirements, you rarely saw one without the other, with Bobby always two strides ahead with his long legs and Luvia following behind. Bobby carried their wedding picture in his wallet and never hesitated to share it with whoever he met. He was so proud of his marriage and the love they shared. As he started to have health problems over the last few years, his first worry was making sure Luvia was taken care of while he was at his doctor’s appointments. If you called him while he was in the hospital, his first question was always “How is my Lubey?” Bob was devoted to her and she to him.
Bobby was kind and generous to everyone. Families in his neighborhood knew him as the “Neighborhood Dad” and many would stop to see him and say hi while he worked on his yard or was shucking oysters in his garage. He loved to be outside taking care of his yard, which always looked like a lush, green carpet, or working in his garden where he grew enough vegetables to feed an army. In the summer, he would head to doctor’s appointments with boxes of vegetables for the staff. And if you did stop in to see him, you weren’t going to be able to leave without taking some tomatoes off the table in the garage. His kindness extended to all. He and Luvia opened their home to several of Luvia’s relatives from Guatemala who wanted to come to America for a better life. They would live with them at their home in Camp Springs, MD and Bob hired several to work for him at Acacia to help them get a start in this country.
Bobby traveled back home to the Seventh District every Sunday to visit his parents and extended family for Sunday dinner. He loved crabbing and fishing on his boat in St. Clement’s Bay. Not only did he love to go crabbing, he loved to eat crabs and it became a running bet with his family on how many crabs he would eat in one sitting. He enjoyed gardening and making his yard the envy of all the neighbors. He liked bowling when he was younger and participated in a duck pin league. Bobby also enjoyed playing solitaire on his iPhone, family bingo night with his mother’s relatives, watching Fox News, classic country music, dancing, and parties. He loved having family and friends over often for cookouts, crab feasts, and holiday dinners. He loved joking with everyone, laughter, and lots of hugs from his grandkids. All five grandchildren spent countless hours with him on his boat, at his house, on vacations, and just hanging out. Each held a special place in his heart and spent hours in his recliner napping with him.
Bob was a shining example of a decent, caring, loving and kind human being. He brought immeasurable happiness and joy to his family, friends, and everyone he encountered in life.
Pallbearers will be: Clyde Farrell, Mike Lacey, Patrick Farrell, Michael Foutz, Drew Farrell, and Brittany Bowman.
All funeral services will be private at this time. A Memorial Mass and Celebration of Bob’s life will be held at a later date.
Contributions may be made to the Seventh District Volunteer Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 7, Avenue, MD 20609 and Hospice of St. Mary’s, P.O. Box 625, Leonardtown, MD 20650.