Berber Jr., Robert

Robert Berber, Jr. November 2, 1934 ~ January 2, 2016 Resident of Moraga, CA The Berber family lost its patriarch and the world lost one of its most treasured gentlemen when Robert Berber, Jr. lost his battle with cancer on January 2, 2016. As frequently was the case, Robert was surrounded by loved ones at the time of his passing. Preceding Robert in his passing was his beloved wife, Ofelia (1/25/08). “Mama Ofi” was the family’s culinary genius, ever-willing dance partner and life of the party. Businessman, philanthropist, colorful storyteller and devoted father and grandfather, Robert is survived by his children, Helena, Manuel, Armando, Mario; daughter-in-law Carol and son-in-law John Kahle; grandchildren, Andrew, Alex, Ashley and Anthony; siblings, Richard, Bill, Lolita, David, Carlos, Cecelia and Robbie; and companion, Alice Marez. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Robert attended Cathedral High School where he was Student Body President and excelled in football and track, holding the school’s shot put record for many years. However, it was in Northern California where Robert made a name for himself when he and his father purchased a Mexican grocery store and paneria (Mexican bakery) known for making delicious hand-made corn and flour tortillas and breads, in Oakland in 1954. Through Robert’s hard work and vision, that little store evolved into the highly regarded national tortilla brand, Mi Rancho. Robert was known for his unmatched work ethic and organizational skills, never wavering in his focus to help Mi Rancho grow and realize its success. Respected as much in his community as he was within the tortilla industry, Robert had served on the City Center Federal Savings Board of Directors, lived the “service above self” motto as an active member of the Orinda Rotary Club, delivered meals to the needy through “Meals on Wheels” and established a scholarship fund at his alma mater, Cathedral High School, for underserved families. Although an avid golfer and sports enthusiast, nothing gave Robert more pleasure than spending time with his family and he was particularly proud of his record of never missing a grandchild’s event. Memorial services will be held at St. Monica’s in Moraga on Tuesday, January 12, 2016, at 11 am followed by a reception at Moraga Country Club. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the John Muir Health Foundation (1400 Treat Blvd., Walnut Creek, CA 94597) in Robert’s name. The Berber family lost its patriarch and the world lost one of its most treasured gentlemen when Robert Berber, Jr. lost his battle with cancer on January 2, 2016. As frequently was the case, Robert was surrounded by loved ones at the time of his passing. Preceding Robert in his passing was his beloved wife, Ofelia (1/25/08). “Mama Ofi” was the family’s culinary genius, ever-willing dance partner and life of the party. Businessman, philanthropist, colorful storyteller and devoted father and grandfather, Robert is survived by his children, Helena, Manuel, Armando, Mario; daughter-in-law Carol and son-in-law John Kahle; grandchildren, Andrew, Alex, Ashley and Anthony; siblings, Richard, Bill, Lolita, David, Carlos, Cecelia and Robbie; and companion, Alice Marez. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Robert attended Cathedral High School where he was Student Body President and excelled in football and track, holding the school’s shot put record for many years. However, it was in Northern California where Robert made a name for himself when he and his father purchased a Mexican grocery store and paneria (Mexican bakery) known for making delicious hand-made corn and flour tortillas and breads, in Oakland in 1954. Through Robert’s hard work and vision, that little store evolved into the highly regarded national tortilla brand, Mi Rancho. Robert was known for his unmatched work ethic and organizational skills, never wavering in his focus to help Mi Rancho grow and realize its success. Respected as much in his community as he was within the tortilla industry, Robert had served on the City Center Federal Savings Board of Directors, lived the “service above self” motto as an active member of the Orinda Rotary Club, delivered meals to the needy through “Meals on Wheels” and established a scholarship fund at his alma mater, Cathedral High School, for underserved families. Although an avid golfer and sports enthusiast, nothing gave Robert more pleasure than spending time with his family and he was particularly proud of his record of never missing a grandchild’s event. Memorial services will be held at St. Monica’s in Moraga on Tuesday, January 12, 2016, at 11 am followed by a reception at Moraga Country Club. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the John Muir Health Foundation (1400 Treat Blvd., Walnut Creek, CA 94597) in Robert’s name.


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