American Patriotic 10
Official Obituary of

Robert Bartley Hopler Jr.

March 3, 1932 ~ February 20, 2024 (age 91) 91 Years Old

Robert Hopler Jr. Obituary

Robert Bartley Hopler Jr., of North Richland Hills, Texas, passed peacefully surrounded by the love of his family on Tuesday, February 20, 2024.

Bob was born on March 3, 1932, and grew up in Madison, New Jersey. After high school he attended college on an ROTC scholarship at the Missouri School of Mines, in Rolla, his keen interest in math and science having led him to the study of engineering. There he met Helen (Gaddy), the love of his life. Over the years they made their home in a number of states and traveled widely. They were married 66 years, until Helen passed in 2021.

Between earning BS and MS degrees in Mining Engineering, he proudly served in the U.S. Army Chemical Corps. Bob enjoyed his days as an instructor in the handling of military explosives, toxic gases, and flame throwing. Upon leaving active duty, he served as a Company Commander in the Army Reserves, leaving with the rank of Captain.

After graduate school, Bob spent 35 years working in the explosives industry, the majority of that time with Hercules Powder Company in Kenvil, NJ. He was the Manager of Corporate Technical Services for Dyno Nobel in Salt Lake City when he retired in 1996. Bob wrote a continuing series of articles on explosives history for the Journal of Explosives Engineering for over 40 years. Career highlights include presentations at the FBI Academy, ATF, FAA, and International Association of Bomb Technicians and Investigators; patents on explosives and mining technology; consulting for the Smithsonian on their mining exhibits; technical editor of the Blasters’ Handbook; serving on the National Academy of Sciences committee to develop a national strategy to contain the threat from illegal bombings; and appearing on the History Channel in a Modern Marvels episode entitled “Dynamite”. Helen was most proud of the fact that he testified as an expert witness to the McVeigh grand jury in the Oklahoma City bombing case.

Lifelong hobbies included woodworking, photography, astronomy, book and stamp collecting. He also had a DIY mentality that knew no bounds- no home or car repair was beyond him. He used an electronics kit to build a color tv, then built it into the family room wall, a marvel in the early 1970s. He took photographs of the 1970 solar eclipse, using a telescope he built himself. After his retirement, his extensive library of historical references on mining and explosives led him to start Old Powderman Books.

Bob is survived by daughter, Jennifer Ann Haas of Farmington, Minnesota; daughter, Karen Elizabeth Boyer and husband Ken of North Richland Hills, TX; grandchildren, Alex Haas, Madison Haas, Samantha (Boyer) Alderson and husband Kit and great-grandson Emmett; step-grandson Dylan Boyer and wife Tracy.

He is preceded in death by his wife Helen; his parents Robert B. Hopler Sr. and Margaret Hopler; his sister Marilyn Brown and husband Frank, nephew Cliff; and step-grandson Matthew Boyer.

Bob will be forever in our hearts. Services to be held at Center Point Church, North Richland Hills, TX, March 23, 2024, at 11:30 am.

Friends and family have shared their relationship to show their support.
How do you know Robert Bartley Hopler Jr.?
We are sorry for your loss.
Help others honor Robert's memory.


Memorial Service
March 23, 2024

11:30 AM
Center Point Church
7804 Mid Cities Blvd.
North Richland Hills, TX 76180


© 2024 Forest Ridge Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility