Robert Donald Rakip Jr, a long-time resident of Shirley and Ayer, loving husband, father, and grandfather died Monday, March 7, 2022, at his home surrounded by his family after an illness. He was 70 years old.
Born on December 25, 1951, in Lowell, MA, Bob was the son of the late Muriel (Brule) and Robert D Rakip Sr. Bob was born into a large family that was well known in the area. His father Bob Sr was one of twelve, eleven boys, and one girl. His mother Muriel was one of nine, seven girls and two boys. He was always proud of being a part of this big family and would joke that he had so many cousins he lost count. Bob graduated from Ayer High School, class of 1969, and then went on to graduate from Fitchburg State College with a Bachelor's degree in Education. He married his high school sweetheart, Nancy Shea in 1972, and they would have celebrated their 50 year anniversary on June 10, 2022.
The Nashoba Club has been a part of the Rakip family since 1950 when his Uncle Harold and his wife Jessie first opened the restaurant. Bob and Nancy, along with his mother and father, continued the legacy of the Nashoba Club in 1975, by acquiring the restaurant from his Uncle Russell and his wife Flossie. He was later joined by his sons Scott and Brian at the "Club". Bob became a trusted pillar in the community, always there with a helping hand for anyone in need. Because of Bob, the Nashoba Club was a generous donor to many local sports and youth groups, churches, and the Ayer and Shirley schools. He could always be found at the ball fields or scouting events, coaching and cheering on his boys as well as all the kids; he was the town Dad.
Bob was always cracking jokes, acting silly, and singing songs. Dad had some serious songwriting skills, especially during times that were difficult, and he sang just to make people laugh. He was an avid sports fan, owning season tickets to the Patriots since the 1980s. He never missed a Red Sox game, even if it meant listening to it on the radio. Most of all, Bob wanted to be surrounded by his family, making memories that they will cherish.
He is survived by his loving wife Nancy, his three sons, Jason and his wife Sarah, Brian, and Scott and his wife Jessica, all of Shirley, as well as his five grandchildren, Emma, Abigail, Piper, Cavan, and Sean. He was also survived by a sister Linda and was a loving brother-in-law to Janet Poitras of Shirley, Susan Tremblay of Maine, and Robert Shea of Winchendon. He also leaves behind his aunt, Mrs. Jackie (Anne) Rakip, as well as many cousins, nieces, and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents and sister Karen, and brother-in-law Richard.
Dad chose not to have any formal services, instead, he wanted to invite all to a celebration of his life, which will be held at the Nashoba Club, 14 Central Ave, Ayer on Saturday, March 12, 2022, from 12 - 4 pm. Please dress in your favorite sports attire… except if you are a Yankees fan.