Robert G. “Bob” Hoig
September 11, 1932 – Jan 7, 2019
Age 86. Preceded in death by mother, Elleanor G. Hoig, and father, Ivan E. Hoig. Survived by wife, Martha, of Omaha; sister, Cindy Nisley (Ken); son, Oliver (Robin); daughter, Andrea “Andee”; son, Noel (Andrea); stepson, Jim Pearson (Carmen); stepdaughter, Amy Chittenden (Stuart); grandchildren: Ivy, Noel, Bailey, Ryan, Braden, and Griffin; former wife, Mary Lou Hoig.
The family will receive friends on Friday, Jan. 11th from 5pm to 7pm at Countryside Community Church, 8787 Pacific. CELEBRATION OF LIFE: Saturday, Jan. 12th at 2pm, Countryside Community Church. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to University of Nebraska Foundation—Robert G. Hoig Scholarship.
Bob Hoig was well known in the community for his professional and civic accomplishments. In 2012, he was inducted into the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce’s Business Hall of Fame, selected as the Omahan of the Year by the Suburban Rotary Club of Omaha, and doubly honored by the Omaha Press Club as part of the first father-daughter “Faces on the Barroom Floor” (with Andee Hoig, publisher of metroMAGAZINE) and by being inducted into the organization’s Hall of Fame.
Bob once said he didn’t want people to know him as just a publisher.
He took his first flying lesson at age 70 and bought a Cessna 182 two years later. He took up skiing in his 60s and continued well into his 70s. Bob swam daily throughout the 1960s and 1970s as he approached middle age, and even taught himself to play the saxophone in his 40s. He also loved playing tennis, a sport he continued into his early 80s.
“It never occurred to me to place some kind of age restriction on what I could do if I was really interested,” he said.
Bob also had a wanderlust that began when he was 16 years old and hitchhiked across the country on Route 66. In 1983 he visited every country in Europe and returned to the continent 21 more times by the early 2000s.
Before he became a publisher, Bob was a shoe-leather journalist. He was only 24 in 1957 when, on his way to a corporate job interview, the New York Daily News building drew him in. Bob landed a job there as a copy boy, soon working his way into a promotion. “I had plenty of derring-do about me, chutzpah. I’d try anything,” he said.
Over the next two decades, Bob also wrote for the Miami News, wire service United Press International, the Lincoln Journal and the Omaha World-Herald. He also served as managing editor of the Omaha Sun and the Douglas County Gazette.
During much of his tenure as a writer, Bob served as a crime and corruption reporter. In 1971, he was nominated for a Pulitzer for an Omaha World-Herald series that led to changes in state law.
Bob saw an opportune niche in Omaha media when, in 1975, he launched this publication. It was a risky endeavor at the time, but Bob considered a willingness to take risks “one of the hallmarks of my definition of an entrepreneur.”
His words about his love of flying, “And you’re off into the wild blue…” now take on a special significance. Fly high, Bob.