Robert “Bob” MacCallum 1937 - 2020
Wednesday, March 25, 2020
Longtime ACE member Robert “Bob” N. MacCallum passed away on March 17, following a short bout with cancer. He had just turned 83. Bob’s health had declined in recent years, which curtailed his ACE and travel activities. Bob joined ACE in 1985 and was a familiar face at events, particularly those in Ohio and Pennsylvania. He rarely missed a Northeast Ohio regional event, KennyKon or Phoenix Phall Phunfest. Bob had frequently attended Cedar Point’s CoasterMania, Eastcoaster and No Coaster Con, as well as the occasional ACE national conference or ACE Coaster Con.
Born in Greenville, North Carolina, in 1937, Bob led an exciting life full of travels. An avid train buff, Bob preferred that method of travel, and he would often take long, cross-country train trips to meet with friends and visit amusement parks. He eventually traveled every Amtrak route in the United States.
Although he preferred trains, Bob was no stranger to jet travel. In 2001 he purchased a Round-the-World airline ticket and spent 32 days touring Asia and Europe. His love of travel took him to all 50 states and six of the seven continents. He developed a passion for roller coasters early on in life and had an enviable track record, including many historic and defunct wooden coasters that many ACEers likely never even heard of. When not riding roller coasters in the summer, he enjoyed downhill skiing in the winter.
In addition to ACE, Bob was a member of the National Amusement Park Historical Association, Great Ohio Coaster Club, Western New York Coaster Club, Euclid Beach Park Now, Akron Railroad Club and the NASA Lewis Ski Club.
Bob was an ardent photographer and filmmaker/videographer. His pictures and 8-mm films (and later videos) of trains and coasters, and of his travels, have been published in several books, newspapers and documentaries, including ACE News, RollerCoaster! and Guide to Ride 2000.
Outside of ACE, he had served as the president of the West Akron Kiwanis Club and president of the trustees for the Northminster Presbyterian Church. He was on the board of directors of Euclid Beach Park Now and was involved with the restoration and installation of the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel at the Western Reserve Historical Society. He frequently gave slide and/or video presentations to various groups and produced an exhibit for the Cuyahoga County Library titled “Around the World in 32 Days.”
Bob retired in 1994 from the U.S. Defense Finance and Accounting Service agency in Cleveland, Ohio. He eventually settled into Rockynol, a retirement community in Akron, Ohio, where he frequently organized group activities for the residents, taught retirement classes and continued presenting slide shows of his travels.
Bob was known for his methodical and precise way of doing things — almost excessive at times. His quiet and reserved demeanor belied his passion for the excitement and thrill provided by roller coasters. Although he preferred classic wooden coasters, he rode them all. He was kind and gentle and loved spending time and having dinner with his friends, of which he had many. He will be sorely missed.
— Jeffrey Seifert, ACE Association Manager
Robert N. MacCallum is seen here at the center pole of the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel, PTC #19. Photo: John Marn. View full-sized image.