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In loving memory of
Robert “Bobby” Simpson
  • July 10, 1937
  • -
  • March 02, 2021

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Obituary

Bobby Simpson, legendary airboat builder and Gladesman passed away March 2, 2021 in Fort Pierce, Florida.
Bobby (Robert Franklin Simpson) was born in 1937 to John Franklin Simpson and Edna Louise Whorley Simpson.
Bobby grew up in Palm Beach County, Florida and attended Palm Beach High. After high school he joined the U.S. Navy. Bobby gained metal working experience in the Navy and then with Boys Sheet Metal and Roofing in West Palm Beach.
Bobby designed and built his first airboat in 1973. Bobby Simpson Palm Beach hulls were well known throughout South Florida for their innovative design, craftsmanship and durability. These hulls were riveted and built to run over dry ground. Over several decades, Bobby designed and built over 250 airboats “as a hobby” out of his backyard shop.
Bobby is survived by his three sisters: Ginger Curry, Mary Hamlin, Jackie Hollman and many nieces and nephews.
Bobby was truly one of the real Gladesmen, spending countless hours in his airboats and at his stilt camp “Dixie” in the Everglades.


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  1. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Michelle - Wedding:  Bobby Simpson, Wayne  and Mary Hamlin (Bobby's sister) , John and Margaret Simpson (Father and step mother), Paul Hamlin (nephew) , Mike Curry (nephew) , Michelle (niece) and James Duquette, Al (nephew) and Leslie Hamlin
    Michelle - Wedding: Bobby Simpson, Wayne and Mary Hamlin (Bobby's sister) , John and Margaret Simpson (Father and step mother), Paul Hamlin (nephew) , Mike Curry (nephew) , Michelle (niece) and James Duquette, Al (nephew) and Leslie Hamlin

  2. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Jackie Simpson Hollman, AJ Hollman, John Simpson, Bobby Simpson
    Jackie Simpson Hollman, AJ Hollman, John Simpson, Bobby Simpson

  3. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    green airboat at the Okeechobee shop?
    green airboat at the Okeechobee shop?

  4. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Everglades Camp Permit 1968
    Everglades Camp Permit 1968

  5. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Buck hanging from the front porch of the camp
    Buck hanging from the front porch of the camp

  6. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Paradise
    Paradise

  7. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bustling Camp Dixie
    Bustling Camp Dixie

  8. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Original blue prints for Camp Dixie
    Original blue prints for Camp Dixie

  9. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Camp under construction
    Camp under construction

  10. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Shop with boat under construction
    Shop with boat under construction

  11. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobbys office and administrative team
    Bobbys office and administrative team

  12. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    One of Bobby's early boats?
    One of Bobby's early boats?

  13. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby wade fishing in the Glades
    Bobby wade fishing in the Glades

  14. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby loading yellow airboat on the trailer
    Bobby loading yellow airboat on the trailer

  15. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby at the grill
    Bobby at the grill

  16. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    John and Bobby -  Father and Son moment...
    John and Bobby - Father and Son moment...

  17. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Great Uncle Bobby with Emma Louise
    Great Uncle Bobby with Emma Louise

  18. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby and Carl Hurst? giant stringer of fish
    Bobby and Carl Hurst? giant stringer of fish

  19. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby and ?   Airboat on berm
    Bobby and ? Airboat on berm

  20. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby out on the water
    Bobby out on the water

  21. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Airplane crash in the Everglades
    Airplane crash in the Everglades

  22. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Airboat with stringer of fish 1
    Airboat with stringer of fish 1

  23. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Airboat FL 8267 SF
    Airboat FL 8267 SF

  24. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Aircraft Engine Receipt from Tilford Flying Service ,  West Palm    1970
    Aircraft Engine Receipt from Tilford Flying Service , West Palm 1970

  25. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Airboat Operating Permit for Loxahatchee Wildlife Area  1975
    Airboat Operating Permit for Loxahatchee Wildlife Area 1975

  26. Alvin Hamlin posted an image:
    12 Mar 2021
    Bobby with bass on a stringer in the Glades
    Bobby with bass on a stringer in the Glades

  27. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    11 Mar 2021
    Bobby Article Page 5
    Bobby Article Page 5

  28. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    11 Mar 2021
    Bobby Article Page 4
    Bobby Article Page 4

  29. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    11 Mar 2021
    Bobby Article Page 3
    Bobby Article Page 3

  30. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    11 Mar 2021
    Bobby Article Page 2
    Bobby Article Page 2

  31. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    11 Mar 2021
    Bobby Article Pg 1
    Bobby Article Pg 1

  32. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    10 Mar 2021
    Uncle Bobby's Shop
    Uncle Bobby's Shop

  33. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    10 Mar 2021
    Uncle Bobby's Camp
    Uncle Bobby's Camp

  34. Paul Bryan Hamlin posted an image:
    10 Mar 2021
    Uncle Bobby with an alligator
    Uncle Bobby with an alligator

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