Florida Trail Association

Remembering Bruce Hobson

Joan & Bruce Hobson, Jan. 2008 (Bobbi Keenan)

Bruce Hobson
FTA Board Director
Highlanders Chapter: Chapter Director & Vice-Chair, Chapter Council Representative,Trail Maintainer (Ocala NF & Richloam WMA Trailmaster), Activity Leader
FTA Awards: Special Service 2004, Lifetime Achievement 2011

In Remembrance of Bruce Hobson
by Bobbi Keenan and Bill Milton

Bruce was born on May 17, 1926  in Newport, Rhode Island. He was the son of Earl H. and Maybell Kingsley Hobson.  Earl was a veteran of World War 1 and had served our country in Camp Devens, Massachusetts and also in France.

Bruce entered the military service in 1944 and served as an Electrician’s Mate Third Class on the USS Mackinac.  He was awarded the WWII Victory Medal, the American Theatre Medal and the Asiatic Pacific Medal with 2 stars.

After his military duty, Bruce entered the Massachusetts Agricultural College and studied Animal Husbandry during 1948-1950.  Here he acquired the nickname of Hob or Hobby. In 1951, Bruce and Joan Morison, the daughter of Hugh and Catherine Morison were married.

Bruce and Joan relocated to Clermont about 1985.  They joined the FTA in 1991 when Joan Hobson went on her first backpacking trip and maintenance hike with the Suncoast Chapter.  Wherever Joan was, Bruce was not far behind. Bruce was more interested in maintaining the trail than in long-distance hiking but he followed along providing the support vehicle for Joan’s adventures while she was hiking the trail by providing her food, clothes and other support.  

With the Highlanders Chapter alone, Bruce had logged over 949 trail maintenance hours.  This does not include all the hours he devoted to volunteering with other FTA chapters. Bruce and Joan were more recently co-trailmasters in the Ocala National Forest and previously had been trailmasters for a section in the Richloam Wildlife Management Area.  Bruce continued volunteering on trail maintenance work hikes until late 2012, at the age of 86.

Bruce served for a number of years as the Highlanders Chapter Vice-Chair and as a member of the FTA Board of Directors as the Highlanders Chapter Director.  Later he served as the Highlanders Chapter Council Representative. In 2004 Joan and Bruce received the Special Service Award. In 2011 Joan and Bruce were awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Florida Trail Association.

But this was not all that Bruce accomplished for the Highlanders.  Bruce knew we needed to raise money for the Highlander’s Chapter expenses so he took upon himself the project of aluminum can recycling.   Month by month, year in and year out, Bruce rode his bicycle collecting cans thrown out on the roadways cleaning up the environment. Along with all of the cans that chapter members collected and brought to our chapter meetings, Bruce crushed the cans and stored them, waiting for the best prices, and then transported them from Clermont to Leesburg to sell.   Bruce donated all this time and money to the Chapter.

This Was A Man Called Bruce…We All Will Miss Him

Bruce is survived by his wife of 64 years, Joan and his daughters Marsha Dymond (Jay) and Susan Kingsley, sons; Mark (Jean) and David (Dorothy), 8 grandchildren, 8 great grandchildren.