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Robert Brian Cass, 72, of Missoula, passed away at home on Tuesday, April 24th, 2018.
Brian was born on June 6th, 1945, in Chicago, IL to Elinor Hessler and Leland Hooker Cass. He grew up in the Chicago suburb of Golf, where he would spend countless hours playing games of pickup baseball. He attended Notre Dame High School, then followed his brother, Lee, to the University of Notre Dame, through which he spent a year abroad in Innsbruck, Austria. His graduate studies were interrupted by military service, but he worked toward his doctorate at Indiana University, where he would meet his wife Virginia.
The two were married in October of 1978. They moved to Missoula in 1988 to raise their two young daughters. Brian moved back to Chicago several years later, working at the Department of Energy and taking care of his parents, but returned to Missoula after they passed.
In retirement he would take a part time job at the Missoula Public Library. His love of books was legendary, especially history. Though he owned thousands, he was often able to recall the exact page in a specific book that a fact was on, much to the chagrin of those he was trying to prove wrong.
His quick wit and sense of humor were well known to all. He produced an anonymous satirical magazine for more than a decade and spent hours carefully crafting subversive letters to friends and coworkers.
He had a zeal for exercise and the outdoors. He would hike the Grand Canyon several times and take frequent trips to Glacier National Park. He also enjoyed hiking, mountain biking and cross country skiing in the areas around Missoula.
A devoted sports fan, he was especially fond of golf, football and baseball. He was a lifelong Cubs fan, who loved the team so much he couldn’t bear to watch Game 7 of the 2016 World Series out of fear they’d find a way to lose. He was ecstatic when they didn’t.
He also loved ice cream (even in the rain and snow), hardboiled fiction, John Ford westerns and growing tomatoes. He was often at his happiest while reading a book with a dog in his lap.
Survivors include his wife, Virginia Rose Cass; two daughters, Rebecca Rose (Amar) Harouz and Elizabeth Lee Cass; one brother Leland Hooker (Carol) Cass Jr. and one nephew Allan Brian Cass.
Memorials can be made to Friends of Missoula Public Library.
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