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St. Simons Island lost a favorite resident recently with the passing of Robert “Boz” Bostock. Everyone knew Boz, everyone loved him, and he is deeply missed. The stories about him are legendary, and there’s a palpable feeling of his presence lingering even though he’s no longer with us. His friends tell it best. Here are a few quotes that we gathered. To read more, pick up a copy of the July issue.
An immense influence. An inexhaustible example of a DIY attitude. A peer. A timeless island original. Southern renaissance man. Father Goose, Boz, The old man. Robert Bostock, you taught me how hard work and a little thinking outside the box can pay off. That you could look like a free spirit, but think like a business man. That if you’re not having fun doing it, then don’t do it … as well as the value of a damn good pun. Much peace and love to all your family here with us. Godspeed to your spirit. Rest easy Boz. – Griffin Bufkin
I met Robert “ Boz, The Troll, Mr. Dirt, Father Goose” Bostock in the fall of 1970 as I was pledging Kappa Sigma fraternity at Georgia Southern College. Boz was a sophmore and already a brother and I was a junior as a transfer student from Middle Georgia College. I can honestly say the Boz’s personality never changed. I never saw Robert Bostock that he was not in a good mood and he always had a story to tell and he always made me laugh. He is one of those very few people you meet in life that you will remember and tell stories about for the rest of your life. Robert Bostock was one of a kind and the world was a better place with him in it. – Bill Nutgrass
Boz and I were friends for over 30 years. His humor was like none other, and I’m sure everybody has great stories. I’ve got hundreds. He could find humor everywhere, maybe at your expense, maybe mine, or often his own. He had the quickest wit of anyone I have ever known. Not long after Boz returned from a trip to Emory, I went to see him at his office above Bubbas. I said to him, “Damn Boz, you look like you’ve been to the spa or something!” He’d lost a little weight and looked great. He says, “Yeah, I was thinking about being cremated, but now I look so good I think I’ll have an open casket!” Perfect Boz – humor anywhere and everywhere. He did many good things in his life here on St. Simons Island – he was a teacher, a wrestling coach, a bartender, an artist, a toy store owner and lastly, a restaurateur. But he was most proud of being a dad. Boz fought his fight and dealt with it with class, dignity, and of course, humor! He made a huge mark in too short of a lifetime – he was a true original and Janet and I are proud to call him our friend! – Forrest Brown
A big part of Christmas was Christmas Eve lunch at Gnat’s. For the past 11 years, this was a tradition for a group of close girlfriends with Boz and the rest of the Gnat’s family. We girls made sure our Christmas rush was completed by the 23rd! Boz stocked up on champagne for our mimosas and poinsettias, and he would occasionally sit with us or stop by. He’d be wearing his apron and Santa hat because his day was spent smoking numerous tenderloins, Boston butts and turkeys for his family and for Christmas gifts. But as hectic as the day was, he always offered to make one of his specialties for you to have for your family. So many cherished memories and laughter that I wouldn’t trade for anything! When we learned his fight was over, we gathered at Gnat’s with the Gnat’s family, hugging and sharing tears for the loss of a dear friend. Some of the crew quickly thought ahead to Christmas Eve, and mentioned how different this year would be. We all looked at each other and smiled, vowing we’d honor his spirit this year by reflecting on how much we all loved precious Boz. – Sherril Sumner
The thing that I will miss most about Mr. Bostock – that’s how I knew him first – is his generosity. He was generous with his time, love, money, advice, and so much more. I met his daughter Jocelyn when I was 5 years old and we have remained close ever since. Growing up, I spent a lot of time at the Bostock’s; Boz made you feel like a part of the family. He loved being a dad and did so much for us kids; driving us to dance classes, the fair, anywhere we wanted. He loved making breakfast in the mornings and always had a funny joke to make us laugh. Boz never seemed bothered when it came to us kids – he was always patient and kind. Years later, when I would come to Boz for donations to various charities, his answer was always yes! He loved giving to his community. I am a better person for knowing Mr. Bostock and I hope to be as generous a person as he was. – Kim Richardson
Boz was one of the first people I met when I moved to St. Simons 23 years ago. Our mutual appreciation of bad humor and an entrepreneurial spirit drew us together immediately, and we executed many projects together. I could go on and on about humor and T-shirts and bumper stickers. But I am ultimately most impressed with how he dealt with the last year and a half of his life. He was supportive when I had the opportunity to go through cancer treatment in 2007. He faced his own challenge with nothing but a positive spirit, courage, and – most importantly – his Olympic sense of humor. People with an enhanced sense of humor and an enhanced appreciation of life, tend not to be so overwhelmed with the knowledge of its imminent end. If it is possible for a life to end well, his did. In spades. – Harlan Hambright