Dr Robert Vriesenga was born in San Antonio, December 14, 1934. His family moved to Dallas, TX where he attended Highland Park High School and became an Eagle Scout. He attended Texas A&M University, was part of the Corp of Cadets and graduated from the School of Veterinary Medicine in 1955. Serving in the United States Air Force upon graduation, he was stationed in Japan and provided Veterinary care for the Sentry Dogs. In 1960, Robert moved back to Dallas to build his own small animal practice, Forest Park Veterinary Hospital, in which he maintained for nearly 40 years. Robert married Regina “Regi” Reichelt in 1965 and they had two children, Tracy and Craig. They would have celebrated 50 years of marriage in 2015 but Regi lost her battle with brain cancer just shy of their anniversary.
For over 30 years Robert was the financial officer for Oleo, including playing a major part in booking the cabins for the four month annual summer season. Robert was the vet for Charlie Dennison , one of the original owners, and cared for his bird dogs. It all began in 1984 when Charlie talked Robert into a road trip to Colorado to show him Oleo. Robert soon became an active member, bringing his wife Regi, daughter Tracy, and son Craig every year to the high country to enjoy the mountains and family time. Along with caring for his bird dogs, the request came at one time to pull the fangs on Charlie’s pet rattlesnake. But that’s another story.
November 2016, Dr Vriesenga was touring the Galapagos Islands with the Traveling Aggies and passed away due to a heart condition. This trip was on his bucket list. He specifically wanted to see the Galapagos Giant Tortoise and the Blue Footed Boobie, and he did! He was a loving husband, a wonderful father, and a caring Veterinarian. He was an avid gardener, fisherman, traveler, reader of American Indian and Texas history. There wasn’t a pecan pie he could turn away, he loved chicken fried steak and German beer.
Oleo meant so much to him, as it does for so many others in our family, and we thank him for all he did to keep Oleo as simple as it is. The Oleo family will miss him dearly.