The Fence Post obituary: Robert Buckley Pryor

Robert Buckley Pryor, 89,

June 8, 1929 – Jan. 11, 2019

Fort Collins, Colo.

Bob Pryor was born in Sarcoxie, Mo., to farmers during the Great Depression, and moved multiple times across the western United States as a child with his family. He spent most of his childhood in Missouri, then settled in Gunnison, Colo., as a teenager to work at his uncle’s cattle ranch feeding cows, breaking horses and cutting props and saw logs by hand that were skidded out with horses.

He worked with his father for the county as a dozer and blade hand until 1950, then moved to the Pueblo, Colo., area. He was drafted in March of 1950 to serve in the Korean War as a construction engineer, sergeant 1st class, at one point constructing roadways behind enemy lines.

After discharge in 1952, he met Donna (Blank) Pryor in Colorado Springs, Colo., and they married after a short courtship. They moved to Fort Collins, Colo., in 1963, where they resided for 56 years raising hay and cattle. He worked as a construction supervisor and heavy equipment operator for Spencer Construction, then for himself. He earned the reputation for being able to do anything with a back hoe or from a tractor seat. He was a member of the Operating Engineers Local #9 for 66 years. He is survived by his wife Donna, sons Terry and Larry, daughter Halli, six grandchildren and three grea-grandchildren.

A natural and avid story teller, with a full lifetime of experience to pull from, he often had the room in stitches and wondering how he survived to such a ripe old age. His favorite subjects were various combinations of old pickups, old tractors, broncy horses, and good dogs, augmented by his own colorful language and euphemisms. Fittingly, the sun rose and set around haying time, and in the decades of his later years he became famous as the area’s custom hay man. He personified the values of his generation, by a word, a handshake and a look in the eye.

A life celebration with family and friends will be held at a later date, when the hay field turns to green.


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