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Volume 7524

(January 29, 1958 - November 2022)

Bob with wife Debbie and son Matthew

John "Bridge" Martin Remembers Bob Burrows

  Bob Burrows had a pretty good name for a Burroughs fan. It sounded the same but wasn't quite spelled the same.

  Nonetheless, Bob was an active fan, a member of the National Capital Panthans and also a contributor to the Edgar Rice Burroughs Amateur Press Association for a few years. He chose the persona name of Shoz-Dijiji when he was a member of the old ERBlist discussion group.

  Bob was employed in 1984 by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as an Oceanographer.  He also volunteered as an Exhibit Guide at the National Aquarium in Baltimore and for their Marine Animal Rescue Program.

  He earned a Master's Degree at Johns Hopkins in Environmental Sciences and Policy.

  Bob was born in Milwaukee in 1958 but his first memories were of Fullerton, Calif. When he was five, the family moved to Cleveland, where he attended  grade school at Gesu School in University Heights Walsh Jesuit High School in Cuyahoga Falls. He attended the University of Miami in Florida.

  His wife, Debbie, was born in Minneapolis and worked in the dental fields as a business assistant. They married in 1986 and a son, Matthew, was born in 1995

1. Bob with the very ill actor Gordon Scott
2.  Bob Burrows (Shozz Dijiji) with Gordon Scott's Tarzan knife.

   Bob did one of his greatest services for ERB fandom when he devoted time to encouraging Gordon Scott in what turned out to be the Tarzan actor's last weeks on this earth. He shared this experience at the time on the Web:

  "I had only met Gordon recently (February 2007), but I felt that I had known him forever!  When I went to see him at Good Samaritan Hospital in Baltimore, he was kind and gracious and wouldn't hesitate to shake your hand and smile.  We talked and I expressed my reason for getting in contact with him.  We, as fans, wanted to express to Gordon that he wasn't forgotten and that he had more friends that he could imagine.

  "I had relayed that as a member of the National Capital Panthans, a part of the Burroughs Biblophiles, we, as a group, decided that we wanted to help him get back on his feet and reintroduce him to fandom.  He like the idea and expressed an interest in attending one or more of our meetings and possibly the convention in Louisville in August 2007.

  "I also retrieved mail and some things from the rehab center and asked if he needed anything.  Gordon expressed a weakness that the hospital couldn't provide...milk and cookies! Needless to say, I went to the local grocery store nearby know the rest!  "Gordon was always grateful.

 "The National Capital Panthans adopted Gordon and made him an honorary lifetime member of the Panthans.  He loved it.  I also started to deliver his mail as most of it sat around and wasn't delivered.  He appreciated that and even found a fan in the next bed, who was there for a day before I got there and figured out who Gordon was...Tarzan!  That day we took two pictures which turned out to be the last pictures Gordon ever took.  What an omen.

   "The second time I visited Gordon, he was in good shape compared to before and was even taking walks around the ward and the campus!  Great!  As I was leaving, he mentioned that they tested his heart and everything was clear but that they wanted to replace one of his valves to get more oxygen to the body and help his emphysema.
  "The next couple of weeks Gordon was transferred to Johns Hopkins University's Medical Hospital to do the replacement.  Between Skyler Brower, Roger and Betty Thomas, and myself, we finally located Gordon, who was being stubborn about doing the replacement (prophetic?).  Finally he had the replacement done about 4 weeks before he gave up.  I visited him in sanitary garb but he mainly slept and I watch him and occasionally talked.  I delivered and read mail to him.  I hope he heard.

  "Two weeks later I visited him again.  He was conscious but having trouble and they had to watch him.  I again gave him mail and read most of it to him.  My stay was short but Gordon appreciated it.  He was getting frustrated as the complications from the surgery crept up.

   "My last visit to Gordon has a prelude.  After my visit on April 24, I started to get images and messages from God saying I needed to talk to Gordon about deep and spiritual things about eternity. (For those who don't believe this, please bear with me)  I kept fighting to do this because I was so unsure.  But after about a week and a half, I decided to talk to him and let God give me the words."On April 28, 2007, I arrived at about 2:50 p.m. at the ICU area since Gordon's symptoms were worse, but hopeful.  I delivered the mail to him and began to chat with him.

   "This was a one-way thing since Gordon was semi-conscious and couldn't talk due to a feeding tube in his stomach.  What happened in the next half hour blows me away.  I, through the grace of God, shared the Gospel to Gordon and related it to my life which in ways was similar, yet different than his.  As I prayed, a tear came to his eye, and I knew he heard, maybe accepted.  I was hopeful. (For those who aren't believers, the hope part is most important here, so again bear with me).  I left the hospital around 3:30 p.m. and just missed Betty Thomas who arrived about 15 minutes later.  One thing I did as I left is I put my fist on his heart area and said, "You better get well Gordon!  I still owe you dinner!"  And I left.  Who would have known that that was to be the last time I'd see Gordon, my friend, alive....  "

  "I received the call from Betty on April 30, my wife's birthday, at about 10:55 a.m. and returned her call at about 11:10 a.m. as I was going from one building to the next at work.  I was in shock!  I just couldn't believe it!  Gordon passed away at about 10:50 a.m. due to complications from heart surgery!  Was that surgery immediately necessary or could they have held off a bit to when Gordon was stronger and in better spirits?  We may never know!

  "As the days roll by, the details grow and grow for his last physical ride.  He wanted to be buried with his parents in Oregon.  Is that possible?  I sure hope so.  My friend deserves that.  I'll miss him very much.  I grew to love that man as an actor I've seen in the pictures, but also as a friend.  May our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and also to his friends both old and new.  May God give them comfort.

   "I hope our brief friendship made a difference.  I know it has for me.  "If Gordon made that pledge,  I'll be paying for dinner when my time comes.I hope you like the last pictures of Gordon Scott.  As fellow fan and friend Dorothy Howell says:  WANISHI (May your path be beautiful)!

  Not mentioned in the above is that Bob also brought Gordon some copies of his movies.

  Bob, as I recall, was able to attend Gordon's graveside service in the Valhalla section of Kensico Cemetery in the township of Mount Pleasant in Westchester County, N.Y.  Bob had expressed a willingness to collect fan donations for a suitable marker for Gordon but the cemetery rules permitted only flat markers with just the basic information.


1. Bob with Denny Miller
2. Bob with Laurence Dunn

Bob at one of the many ECOF and Dum-Dum Conventions he attended through the years.

ECOF 2002: Bob Burrows, D.J. Howell, Sue-On & Bill Hillman,
Bill Herr, Huck Huckenpohler and Bob O'Malley.

Bob Burrows looks on as Frank Lipo, Executive Director of
the Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest,
describes the future location of the society,
where an ERB "museum within a museum" is planned.


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