Bob Moore always had a lot to say about the war. “The country lost money on me,” says Bob, who trained endlessly as part of the navy’s amphibious fleet for the invasion of Japan that never happened. He practiced beach assaults as a crew member on small, specialized landing craft called LCVPs and LCIs at Catalina Island and Maui, Hawaii, but never against the enemy. Bob’s older brother had ten battle stars on a destroyer in the Pacific. Bob continued to practice. He wanted to get into the action, too, but there was just more practice. “We were bored,” he says.
After Truman dropped the atomic bombs–a necessary action for which Bob still praises the president–he found himself as part of the occupation of Japan, duty he didn’t at first relish. “I learned to hate the Japanese. We were taught to hate . . . They weren’t human to us.” That was hard to overcome he admits. Maybe some of those feelings are still there.
Like a lot of GIs and sailors. Bob’s fondest memories involve coming home. “Golden Gate Bridge–nothing like it,” Bob exclaims. And when the troops landed among throngs of grateful citizens, he says, “They treated everybody like a hero.”
For several years we have been interviewing veterans at Providence Point retirement community, situated in the South Hills region of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. On November 14, 2012, Todd DePastino met with Bob Moore to hear about his service in the navy during WWII.
A year earlier, Kevin Farkas met and recorded Bob at the WWII Memorial in Washington, DC. “I want to tell you something about the war,” he said while the bristling monument gleamed in the late afternoon sun of a spectacularly clear day in early October. The crowds of visitors had nearly vanished, and Bob sat alone on a bench, obviously deep in thought. “I want to set the record straight for a lot of young people who don’t think we should have dropped the bomb,” he said. “I’ve got something to say about that . . . .”
The Final Story
Beloved family man and restaurateur, Robert G. Moore, of Scott Township, PA, formerly of Upper St. Clair, died on March 11, 2015, at age 89. Born October 12, 1925, Bob graduated from Sharon High School in 1944 and Grove City College in 1950. He proudly served in the Pacific with the Navy Amphibious Forces during World War II.
Bob started his career at Eat’n Park Restaurants in 1951 and retired after 39 years in 1990 as President, where he was described as “a kind and respected leader who made the company a family.” The son of Harry and Beatrice Moore of Sharon, PA; and brother of Wallace Moore, Bob is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Claire Hatch Moore. Bob took great pride and joy in his sons and daughters-in-law, Richard (deceased), Scott (Nancy), Christopher (Kim – deceased) (Laurie) and William (Teri). His sons remember their father as a humble gentleman with a quick wit, who served as a model and inspiration to his family.
His pride and joy extended to his many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. His wife, Claire, will miss having her best friend by her side.