Robert 'Bob' Charles Stainbrook I (1931-2018)

Pharmacist was active in his church, county GOP


Robert “Bob” Charles Stainbrook I, a retired Toledo pharmacist, an Army veteran of the Korean war, and a former member of the Lucas County Republican Party Central Committee, died Friday, Feb. 9, at St. Luke’s Hospital. He was 87.

He died of combined complications of a recent pneumonia and a recent heart attack, relatives said.

Mr. Stainbrook retired in about 1990 after 33 years as a sales representative for Eli Lilly and Co., a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical corporation. In retirement, he was a pharmacist at the former Medical College of Ohio for 16 years until retiring permanently in 2007.


He was a Toledo Academy of Pharmacy member and officer from the late 1950s through the mid-1960s.

“He was a highly respected and compassionate individual,” said Gary Zdawczyk, a longtime friend and a former co-worker. “He was very dedicated to his profession of pharmacy, and he was a mentor to many younger colleagues at Eli Lilly and Company.”

Mr. Stainbrook was also an elected member of the Lucas County Republican Party Central Committee from 2008 to 2014 and had been a campaign volunteer since, said son Jon Stainbrook, the county Republicans’ chairman.

Said the younger Mr. Stainbrook, “When he got in the wheelchair, he couldn’t go door-to-door, but he continued mailing letters and making phone calls and helping organize events. He was so dedicated he would have phone banks in his house so he could work on campaigns from home all the way up to the presidential election of 2016.”

Born Feb. 1, 1931, in Toledo to Oscar and Anna Stainbrook, Mr. Stainbrook attended the former Trinity Lutheran Church grade school downtown and then Libbey High School, graduating in 1949. As a teen, he was a newsboy, delivering The Blade in the area of Vance and Tecumseh streets in central Toledo.

In 1951, Mr. Stainbrook enlisted in the Army, went through training in Hawaii, and served in Germany and then in Korea during the Korean War. He returned to Toledo after his honorable discharge after the war’s 1953 armistice.

Mr. Stainbrook enrolled at the University of Toledo’s College of Pharmacy, from which he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in the late 1950s, completing the five-year degree in 3½ years, before he went to work for Lilly, his son said.

“He was the family patriarch,” Jon Stainbrook said. “He knew everybody and everybody knew him. He was so personable. We would go to a store and he would spend hours, catching up and talking to people. And he was very positive, always optimistic.

“He was a pharmacist and people often called for advice on medicines and also for advice on life,” the younger Mr. Stainbrook continued. “He was on the phone all the time. His family was first, but he would help anyone. He loved people and put them ahead of himself. And I never heard him say a bad word about anybody and I never heard a bad word said about him.”

The elder Mr. Stainbrook was a lifetime member of Trinity Lutheran Church, where he was a past elder, school board member, and softball coach.

In his free time, he enjoyed traveling in the United States and overseas, with Hawaii, Alaska, China, and Germany among his favorite places to visit. He also visited every other state in the United States.

Mr. Stainbrook married Gloria J. Wright in 1951, with whom he raised two sons. She died in 1986. In 1988 he married Wynette Huner, who died in 2012.

He is survived by his sons, Robert C. Stainbrook II and Jon C. Stainbrook; brother, Richard Stainbrook; three grandchildren, and a great-grandson.

Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Walter Funeral Home, 4653 Glendale Ave. Funeral services will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday at Trinity Lutheran Church, 4560 Glendale.

The family suggests tributes to the church.

Contact Mike Sigov at sigov@theblade.com419-724-6089, or on Twitter @mikesigovblade.