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Obituary: Robert Thornlow

Robert Timothy Thornlow, 49, of Durham N.C., formerly of Alexandria, Va., passed away peacefully in the arms of his loving wife on March 30, 2011.

Robert was born in August 1961 in Greensboro, N.C., to Barbara (Ward) and Robert G. Thornlow.  Born into a Marine Corps family, Robert grew up in Camp Lejeune and Jacksonville, N.C.  Rob graduated from North Carolina State University in 1984 with a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and entered the U.S. Navy.  He received his Master of Science degree in electrical engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School in 1990. While stationed in Monterey, Calif., he met his future wife, who was serving as an Army nurse at Fort Ord, Calif.  Robert and Deirdre (Kling) were married in April 1991.  Robert spent his naval career as a surface warfare and engineering duty officer in San Diego, Long Beach Calif.,  London and Washington, D.C., before retiring as a commander in 2005. He continued working in the defense industry following retirement.

An avid runner, Rob also enjoyed hiking, golfing, traveling and spending time with family and friends.  All will miss his infectious smile, sense of humor and love of life.  Robert is survived by his wife; his parents; stepfather, Rick Davis of Madison, N.C.; stepmother, Priscilla Thornlow of Jacksonville, N.C. ; one brother, Todd; four sisters, Jackie Best (Danny), Terri Lien (Jim), Robin Hoots (Jerry) and Gina Dixon; and several cherished nieces and nephews. 

Donations can be made in Rob’s memory to the CURED Duke Prostate Cancer Fund (CURED-DPC) or Duke Home Care and Hospice online at gifts.duke.edu/daa or to Alumni & Development Records, Duke University, Box 90581, Durham, NC 27708-0581.

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