A Teacher at Belleville Ouest high school and the former football coach who passed away this week is remembered for his ‘fun-loving’ attitude with his family and students.
Bob Flake’s death was reported to Belleville School District 201 on Thursday, Superintendent Brian Mentzer said. He was 40 years old.
“Our hearts go out to Bob’s family,” Mentzer said.
The cause of death has not been released. Flake’s survivors include his wife, Angela, and children, Bobby Jr. and Victoria.
“He was a fun loving guy,” Belleville West manager Rich Mertens said of Flake. “He always put others first, his family, students and staff.
“He just had a good attitude, a positive attitude,” Mertens said.
“I used to say hello during the day, ‘How are you doing Bob?’ and he always replied, “Living the dream.” “
Flake’s family released a statement Friday afternoon thanking everyone for the outpouring of love and support, especially from the staff and students at Belleville West.
“Bob was truly an amazing father, husband and friend,” the statement read.
He loved teaching and coaching, but most of all being a loving and dedicated husband to Angela and her two children Bobby and Victoria, the family said.
Details on memorials and funerals are still being finalized.
Flake had been the head of the Belleville West science department in recent years and had previously been an assistant football coach.
Mertens said Flake was hired at Belleville West in 2006 and teaches courses in biology and veterinary science.
Flake was not a coach this past football season, but he had been on the team’s coaching staff for the previous years of his tenure at Belleville West, Mertens said. One of his recent assignments was to serve as the offensive coordinator.
Mentzer said Flake had a “wide range of influence” as head of the science department and as a football coach.
“He was able to make different connections with different groups of children and children with varying interests,” Mentzer said.
How to help
A GoFundMe page called the Flake Family Memorial Fund have been established.
“He didn’t give up on anyone,” the page reads. “He put people first over things. He understood that it takes giving people time to make a difference in their lives, and he volunteered his time.
This story was originally published December 31, 2021 12:00 p.m.