Bob Coker Passes Away

November 11, 2017

Frequent Great Racer Bob Coker passed away Nov. 9 at his home in North Carolina at the age of 82. Known affectionately as “Uncle Bob” around the Great Race and Coker Tire, Robert Edward Coker loved Buicks. He got his love for antique automobiles from his father, and through the years had owned some of the most unique makes of that marque, especially from the 1950s. Bob was the owner and caretaker of the 1954 Buick Landau concept car and the 1955 Buick Motorama car among others.

Bob could always be found at an AACA event like Hershey, at a Buick Club of America meet, on a car tour or participating in the Great Race. His last Great Race was in 2011 in his 1955 Buick station wagon. “A lot of people had better scores on the Great Race than Bob Coker, but no one had more fun,” Great Race director Jeff Stumb said. “He was a true American, a veteran and quite a character.”

Bob’s brother Harold Coker started Coker Tire in 1958, and annual Coker Tire Challenge Spirit of the Event award is named in honor of his other brother Bill Coker.

Click the link below for Bob’s obituary in the Winston-Salem Journal.

4 comments about “Bob Coker Passes Away”

  • Uncle Bob was so much fun on the 2011 race. Enjoyed him so much as we always seemed to start close to him.
    He will be greatly missed, but he certainly helped us create many fun Great Race memories.

  • I am saddened to learn of Bob’s passing. Few Great Racers had as much fun at the finish line each evening as “Uncle Bob”! He had a chuckle that was unforgettable. Condolences and love to the Coker family.

  • Uncle Bob was one of my first Great Race friends from 1999 and I loved him dearly. You always knew that exactly where you stood with him. He always made me laugh an gave me a hard time about everything! I can still picture him and Daddy talking and joking. I will truly miss him.

  • Bob Coker was one of the finest and most colorful human beings I’ve known. He was kind enough to reach out not long before his passing and for that I’m truly grateful. The way he danced into a room and lit it up is a memory I’ll always cherish, and the delightful and infectious way he shared his joy of living is a regular inspiration to me. My heart goes out to his family and the many who miss him. Rest in peace, my good friend.

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