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Robert Duane (Bob) Owen May 26, 1961 – June 29, 2023

Celebration of Life

Robert Duane (Bob) Owen, 62, of Tehachapi, passed away tragically and unexpectedly on June 29, 2023. Bob was born on May 26, 1961, in Dayton, Ohio, to M. Jean (Truxall) and Robert T. Owen.

Bob graduated from Fairview High School in 1979. He attended Ohio University and transferred to Ohio State, graduating in 1984 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He was an engineer for 33 years.

Bob loved being an engineer. In fact, he made some major contributions to the aerospace industry. He began his career at Boeing in Seattle, Washington. At that time, he helped design new aircraft and helped develop the single-aisle 757, the larger, twin-aisle 767 and upgraded versions of the 737. Other projects he was involved in were the Space Shuttle, to which Boeing contributed with its experience in space rockets acquired during the Apollo era. Bob also participated with other products in the space program, including the International Space Station program. He was most proud of the Northrop B-2 Spirit, also known as the Stealth Bomber. Bob left Boeing in 1995 and moved to California to work at Lockheed Martin. There, his major accomplishment was designing the fuel system for the X-35. This was the first fighter plane to be able to hover. In July 2020, Bob retired from Lockheed Martin and started working for Northrop Grumman. There he was in a highly classified program and was a Subsystems IPT Lead-Principle Engineer for a team of engineers.

Bob's passion for engineering also carried over to his personal life. Bob worked for two years with a builder to design the family's first home which was 3,600 square feet and on a hillside in Tehachapi. Everything he did, he made sure it was backed by data and precisely measured. He even designed and graded the horse arena and was delighted when it rained this last year and there were hardly any puddles.

In his spare time, Bob enjoyed the outdoors and had a fondness for animals. He especially loved hiking and horseback riding. He resided in Tehachapi for 23 years and always hiked the hills of Bear Valley, Tehachapi, Mammoth and the San Bernardino Mountains. He was happiest when he was on his tractor and working on projects for the ranch. He loved all animals and would often train the dogs with patience and consistence. He loved riding horses with his daughter and was proud of her passion and determination to become an excellent rider and trainer. He was also proud of his stepson who was in the Coast Guard for 16 years.

In addition to his parents, Bob was predeceased by his sister, Dorothy A. Dornbusch. He is survived by his daughter, Lauren N. Owen, and her fiancé, Michael Brass; sisters, Frances Owen and Nancy (Edward) Loll; nephews, Gary Loll and Jeff (Lexi) Loll; former wife, Sharon Owen and her son, David Autore, and numerous cousins.

Bob will be deeply missed by his family, friends, coworkers and all who knew him. Bob was a son, a brother, a brother in-law, an uncle, a husband, a father and a friend. He was always helping someone. Bob was the first one you called on if you needed a tool, help with a tractor or help putting something together. If you were ill, he would be the first one to be at the hospital insisting on the best care and treatment.

Bob was intelligent, honest, had integrity, was sensitive, kind and had a great sense of humor. Bob's life may have been cut short, but he touched the hearts of many while he was with us.

The Celebration of Life service was held at Tehachapi Valley United Methodist Church with Pastor Falamao Samate officiating on July 19. Burial was at the convenience of the family at Glen Haven Memorial Gardens in Ohio at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to California Parks Foundation in his honor.

Wood Family Funeral Service, Inc. is handling the arrangements.