Ronald Otto Spear took his final breath the night of November 27, 2022 and tranquilly joined his wife, Liz Spear, in eternal rest. Ron filled many roles during his life – devoted husband, dedicated father, endearing Poppop, and faithful friend. He lived with an eccentric passion for life and uniquely touched the lives of everyone he encountered.
Ron was born July 10, 1950 to Robert and Marybelle Spear in Evansville, Indiana. He shared his childhood with his sister and 4 brothers. It was during this time he developed a knack for drawing, a deep appreciation for Elvis and the Beatles, and a devotion to the Catholic faith. He attended Saint Meinrad and often shared fond memories of his time studying there. His prayer book was always at his bedside. He met the love of his life, Liz Spear, after joining the Kappa Sigma Fraternity at Indiana State University. They enjoyed 47 years of marriage and were blessed with two children and one grandson.
He curated a home full of unique collections that ensured he could strike up a conversation with any guest in his home. He was the guy that always brought the fun to the party; whether it was bringing a full playlist of tunes for the host or dressing up like Elvis, Jack Sparrow, an Easter Bunny, Batman or anything else he inevitably had a costume for in one of his closets. Ron’s enthusiasm was most evident when he was building props or decorations, creating art and working in his garden. He proudly proclaimed himself the Birdman of Avalon, a purveyor of imaginative birdhouses. His final project was a greenhouse made of recycled windows to house his numerous tropical plants including his prize Queen of the Night blooming cactus.
Ron was an avid traveler and member of the Adventurer’s Club. He always proclaimed that a life without travel was like only reading the first page of a book. He fondly reminisced about trips to Alaska, Hawaii, the Caribbean, and Europe. A perennial favorite was vacationing with close family in Florida. He loved shell hunting in Sanibel Island, shopping and listening to live music in Daytona Beach, seeing the Keys (Key West) on his hands and knees, and celebrating his inner child at Disney World.
He was preceded in death by his parents (Robert and Marybelle Spear), his brother (Christopher Spear), and his wife (Liz Spear). Left to cherish his life is his daughter Brittany (Christopher) Samulski; son Logan Spear (Ruhi Srinivasan); grandson Alexander Samulski; sister Sue Lawhead; brothers Ken (Charleen) Spear, Phil (Ann) Spear, Rick (Sarah) Spear; and multiple nieces, nephews and great nieces and nephews whom he adored.
We will be having a funeral mass for Dad at the Catholic Church of Saint Mark (1505 Kempsville Road, Virginia Beach) on Friday, December 2 at 11am. Mass will also be live streamed on Facebook.
There will be a Celebration of Life on Saturday, December 17 at 4pm at Altmeyer Funeral Home (5033 Rouse Drive, Virginia Beach). Dress is casual and Hawaiian shirts or Ugly Christmas Sweaters are encouraged for the celebration.
I was saddened to read in the Kappa Sigma quarterly that Ron “Otto” Spear had passed last November. He and I pledged Kappa Sigma at ISU together in 1970. I had lost contact with him and others from my days at Indiana State. I remember vividly the time we sat up in his dorm room trying to call Eng to see if Paul McCartney had really died. I spent several weekends at his parents’ home and remember seeing how close he was to his family. I wish I knew he traveled to my current home state, Florida, so that I could have reconnected with him. My heartfelt condolences go out to his extended family as he was a good friend of mine in our days at ISU.
Rich “Bucky” Buckingham
Brothers in Heart throughout life – AEKBD – Ron’s Kappa Sigma Brothers will miss him in this life and rejoice with him in the next!! See you soon, Brother. Condolences to your family – they will miss you greatly.
Ron was one of the true Points of Light on this planet.
He will be missed.