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WYATT, Mo. -- Robert Ray "Bob" Nally, 70, a resident of Wyatt, died at 9:27 a.m. Thursday, January 15, 2009 at Southeast Missouri Hospital in Cape Girardeau.
He was born June 11, 1938, in State Park Place, Ill., to the late William Robert and Doris Nell Campbell Nally. He grew up around Greenville, Ill., then moved to a farm near Wyatt in Southeast Missouri.
He began developing his God-given musical talent at an early age by singing harmony with his family, and throughout his life he enjoyed sharing his musical gift as a vocalist.
After attending Charleston High School, he began his riverboat career May 21, 1955. Mississippi County remained his home base most of his life as he worked at learning all phases of river work on nearly all sizes of towboats. He ran vessels on many of the rivers and some Gulf waters as a deckhand, oiler, engineer, pilot and captain, and had worked as port captain of Inland Oil and Transport Co. In 1979 he became manager of Missouri Barge Line in Cape Girardeau. In April 2004 he retired from his river career as Master of the 4300HP M/V BENYAURD with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District.
Following retirement, his love of river life continued as he piloted various towboats and both the Delta Queen and American Queen.
Nally served in the Army National Guard of Missouri from 1960 through 1966 when he was honorably discharged.
Bob considered himself a true patriot. He loved his country. He lived his life to the fullest and absolutely loved life and people. He influenced and encouraged many to pursue their musical talents and took many riverboat friends under his wing to show them his love of the river. Later in life he began developing his artistic talent through many oil paintings.
As a member of the Wyatt Baptist Church, he served as a deacon, music director and Sunday school teacher, and was a member of the Association of Retired Marine Personnel and the Charleston Kiwanis Club.
On Aug. 9, 1959, he married Marilyn Johnson, who survives of the home.
Also surviving are a daughter and son-in-law, Karen Rene and Randy Seabaugh of Cape Girardeau; two brothers, Lowell Nally of Wyatt and Charles Nally of Monticello, Ark.; a sister, Carol Butler of Charleston, Mo.; a grandson, Clayton Ray Seabaugh; and a stepgrandson Brandon Seabaugh, currently stationed in San Antonio.
Funeral services will be conducted at 10 a.m. today at McMikle Funeral Home, with the Rev. Dean Wallace, pastor of the Wyatt Baptist Church, officiating.
Interment will follow in the IOOF Cemetery under the direction of McMikle Funeral Home.
Pallbearers will be Charlie Johnson, Anthony Morris, Bert Johnson, Greg Johnson, Charlie Baugh and Dr. Charles Barnes.
Memorial contributions may be made to Wyatt Baptist Church, P. O. Box 327, Wyatt, MO 63882 or the American Cancer Society c/o Jeanne Rolwing, 1306 State Street, Charleston, MO 63834.