Edward Goza Jr.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Edward Robert Goza Jr., 80, passed away Sunday, May 6, 2012, in Winter Park, Fla.

He was born Sept. 7, 1931, in Cape Girardeau, to Edward and Nell Goza Sr.

Bob was an earnest young man who recognized hard work and academics would be the keys to success. After graduating early from Central High School, he enrolled in Southeast Missouri State University.

In response to the Korean conflict, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force where his aptitude in science was recognized, resulting in Bob defending our country with service at Los Alamos National Laboratory, and as a member of Strategic Air Command.

After completing his enlistment, Bob finished his undergraduate degree at Southeast. He reconnected with his future wife, Judith Barringer, after growing up on the same street as children.

Bob graduated summa cum laude and received a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Washington. He taught at the University of Miami, Vanderbilt University and Louisiana State University, before changing careers in 1972 to nuclear medicine.

Relocating to St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, Fla., Bob used his scientific skills to treat people who had cancer. In 1993 he retired from St. Joe's and went to work at Watson Clinic in Lakeland, Fla., helping to establish their Cancer Care Clinic.

He retired again in 2004 in Lakeland, after more than 60 years of hard work and steady dedication first begun at his family's gas station in Missouri.

As a teenager in Cape Girardeau, Bob's favorite summer activity was going to the pool and flying off its high dive. Continuing his enjoyment of high speed movement, he got his solo pilot's license at a young age and began a lifelong passion for cars and car racing.

Upon starting a family and attending the requisite little league and soccer games, Bob's hobbies shifted to sailing and sports car collecting. While never owning more than one sports car at a time, he dedicated himself to their enjoyment which included performing mechanical maintenance himself. His analytical mind served him well as he could fix almost anything and even assembled a home computer from circuit boards in 1978.

As a husband and father, Bob was a dedicated provider setting an example of upright moral and logical choices throughout his life. One never had to guess what he was going to do, but rather think only of what should be done. And that is what he did. He will be missed greatly by his family.

He is survived by his children, Tracy Goza (Noah) Talesnick of Maitland, Fla., Michael Robert Goza of Chattanooga, Tenn.; a sister, Margie Skiles of Cape Girardeau; two grandchildren, Nathan and Taylor Talesnick of Maitland; two nephews, Robert and Monty Skiles of Cape Girardeau; and two nieces, Diane Weber and Donna Scull of Seattle.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Judith Barringer Goza, in 2005; his father, Edward Sr.; and mother, Nell Goza; a sister; Jeri Scull; and a nephew, David Scull.

Friends may call from 10 a.m. to service time Monday at Ford and Sons Mount Auburn Funeral Home.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at Cape County Memorial Park, with the Rev. Donny Ford officiating.

Online condolences may be made at www.fordandsonsfuneralhome.com.