Bob “Doc” Winjum was born June 24, 1924, in Hayti, S.D., to Ida (Malm) and Martin J. Winjum. Most of his early years were in Watertown and in 1942, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and attended flight instructor school at Randolph Field in Texas. He then became a glider pilot and transported airborne troops and equipment in the European theatre during World War II.
He attended undergraduate college at the University of Oklahoma, the University of Oregon, and Huron College.
He married Helen Wallenfelt, of Watertown, on June 1, 1947. He then graduated from the Northern Illinois College of Optometry in 1948 and started his practice in Chamberlain. He and his family lived in Chamberlain until 1971, when he purchased a practice in Carroll, Ia.
He retired on Aug. 1, 1998, after examining an estimated 200,000 patients over 50 years of practice.
He was active in many professional and service organizations during his lifetime, including the S.D. Board of Examiners in Optometry. He was a 33rd degree Mason and a member of the Shrine. He was a member of the Lions Club, Elks and Jaycees, and was a founder of “Kids Day” in Chamberlain. He loved golf, flying, hunting, boating and traveling with his wife, Helen.
He is survived by two daughters, Janet (Noel) Hamiel, Reliance, S.D; Gloria (Rick) Lee, Bremerton, Wa.; four brothers, Francis, Winterset, Ia.; Mel (Elizabeth), Indianola, Ia.; Ken (Emelia), Indianola, Ia.; Jack, Des Moines, Ia.; and a sister, Marvis (Verdie) Bell, Watertown, S.D.; a daughter-in-law, Ressy (Scott – deceased) Winjum, Des Moines, Ia.; and four granddaughters and 11 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Helen, in 1996; son Scott, in 2001; and a second wife, Ruth, 2006.