Robert Ansel Purple, 81


Mass of Christian BurialLife CelebrationRobert A. Purple, 81, of Hollywood, MD died on December 30, 2012 at his home.

Born July 25, 1931 in Newport, RI, he was the son of the late William and Henrietta "Mary" Purple.

Bob graduated from The Citadel in June 1951 with a degree in Electrical Engineering and later received a Master's degree in Nuclear Engineering and Civil Engineering from MIT in 1958. He spent 20 years in the US Army, serving in both Korea and Vietnam, and retired in 1972 as a Lieutenant Colonel. Bob was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Legion of Merit for exceptionally meritorious service while in combat and in the performance of his military duties. He spent the next 15 years working for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Department of Energy. He served as the US Scientific Representative to the European Community in the late 1970's in Brussels, Belgium.

After a blind date and a three month whirlwind romance, Bob married Betty Robinson. His army career meant frequent moves and the couple lived in France, Washington, Ohio, Kansas, Alabama, Flordia and Virginia. Always looking for adventure, Bob and Betty purchased a home at Deep Creek Lake, Maryland where they and their four kids enjoyed year-round fun waterskiing, sailing, swimming and snow skiing.

In retirement, Bob and Betty enjoyed living on the water and established a business, Hollywood Studio Stained Glass, where they were commissioned to create a variety of stained glass art for individual homes and businesses. Their stained glass can be found in St. Mary's County and throughout the United States. He and Betty supported the Hospice of St. Mary's County through selling specially designed stained glass ornaments for 11 years. "Captain Bob" loved the water, and he and Betty spent a great deal of time exploring the intercoastal waterway and traveling with family. He has created wonderful memories for his family and friends through his many boating excursions.

Bob is survived by his wife of 60 years, Elisabeth R. Purple; his son, Richard Purple; his three daughters and sons-in-law, Jeanne and David Lee, Elees and Kevin Anderson and Sue and Dave Bradley; and his eight grandchildren, Erik, Nikki, Rebecca, Sharon, Christine, Adam, Emily and Annie, who all love and miss him dearly.

Family will receive friends for Robert's Life Celebration on Friday, January 4, 2013 from 12:00 p.m. until 1:00 p.m. at St. John's Catholic Church, 43927 Saint Johns Road, Hollywood, MD 20636. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 1:00 p.m. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday, August 14, 2013 at 3:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Bob's memory may be sent to Hospice of St. Mary's County, P.O. Box 625, Leonardtown, MD 20650.

Condolences to the family may be made at

Arrangements by the Brinsfield Funeral Home, P.A., Leonardtown, MD.

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