Robert (aka Bob and Joe) K. Anderson, 78, of Golden Valley, MN passed away suddenly on May 5, 2020 during an afternoon nap. He leaves behind his devoted partner of 20 years, the love of his life, John Schmidt, and his daughter, Rachel Anderson/Darling (Kimberly Brown). We're all heartbroken.

Robert also leaves behind his brother, Leigh Anderson (Mary); niece, Sharon Shinomiya (Hiro); nephew, David Anderson (Kim); great-nieces, Rena, Ciara and Mariah; along with step-children, Heidi Madson (Tim), Jay Schmidt (Lisa), and step-grandchildren, Emily, Andy, Ryan and Joey. Robert was preceded in death by his parents, Marion I. Anderson and Robert M. Anderson.

Vibrant, demonstrative, good-natured and a sharp wit, Robert was adored and blessed by a wealth of close friends. And he'll be dearly missed by all of them, including his former wife of 16 years, Judy Covell.

Robert was known for his wide-open laugh, genuine interest in others, passionate arguments, intimidating vocabulary, and especially his lovingly playful relationship with his treasured partner of 20 years, John. It was always an absolute joy to be with the two of them. They loved each other deeply, and their mutual affection and appreciation were palpable. And their jokes, delivered with impeccable comic timing, a delight.

Robert was also an avid lover and supporter of live music in the Twin Cities, especially jazz and classical. He and John were always out and about, attending some performance. And the doting father Robert was, he’d attend all of his singing daughter’s shows, faithfully hooting from the front row. (Thank you, Dad!)

After retiring, Robert spent many years volunteering at Aliveness in Minneapolis, giving therapeutic massage to people living with HIV and AIDS. That healing, human connection was so meaningful to him.

He also devoted many years to another organization very dear to him – the Twin Cities Men’s Center. Along with grant writing and prison outreach, he co-facilitated several 12-week Anger Management classes. He loved helping others learn better coping and communication skills for healthier relationships and more productive lives. He found that work especially fulfilling.

And because the Men’s Center work was so close to Robert’s heart, John and Rachel ask that in lieu of flowers or other gifts, you please consider donating to the center at

There will be a private burial on Friday, May 15. And we'll have his Celebration of Life -- the big, beautiful one that he deserves and that John and Rachel want -- later, when it's safer for people to be together.

Note from Rachel to Dad:

You deserve a spectacular obituary. Not only because of the beautiful, loving and generous spirit you shared with everyone who had the honor of knowing you, but also because you were such a talented writer and damn-near intimidating wordsmith. No matter what we come up with, it won’t do you justice. But when you read this from the other side, we hope you feel the love. P.S. We’re so grateful to have had you for any amount of time, but it wasn’t long enough. That fortune teller at Valley Fair owes us at least 5 more years.

Published on May 10, 2020