Mayor Bob Severson was remembered Friday afternoon for his service as a dedicated public servant but also as a husband, father and a man of faith.
About 400 people gathered at the Hermiston Conference Center to remember the late mayor as well as the man.
“The thing about Bob … Bob always showed up,” said Ed Brookshier, Hermiston city manager. “It didn’t matter, big or small, major, minor, he always, always showed up ... we will miss him.”
Brookshier also praised Severson as a “force” behind the new regional water system, a project which Brookshier said Severson helped to create.
Congressman Greg Walden, along with others who spoke, called ‘Mayor Bob’ a “good friend.”
“We’re here to celebrate what was a wonderful life,” Walden said.
The congressman remembered Severson as a man who didn’t seek the spotlight.
“He never cared if he got the credit,” Walden said. “He just cared that the job got done.
“Mayor Bob was a ‘quiet giant’ in this community but he was more than that. Mayor Bob was a servant. He spent his life serving and caring for others especially the people of this town.
“Although he wasn’t a native of Hermiston, he personified this town,” Walden said.
The Rev. Mark Adams of Bethlehem Lutheran Church officiated the memorial service and candidly remembered Severson as a friend of more than 20 years.
“He was a man who loved life,” Adams.
Adams remembered Severson as a store owner who made an effort in the little things such as ensuring employees were safe getting to their cars at night or dropping candy off at the municipal court.
“That faith of knowing where he was going freed Bob up to just be the way he was,” Adams said.
Severson died Monday night after suffering a major heart attack on Dec. 7.