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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

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Obituary

FITE, ROBERT S.

FITE, ROBERT S. Robert (Bob) Stevens Fite, 96, of Cape May passed away peacefully at his home on Friday, May 3, 2024. Bob was a Mayflower Descendent, born to the late Raymond Lewis Fite and the late Elizabeth Stevens Fite in Cape May. Growing up, Bob's family lived in Ocean City during the school year, and in Cape May during the summer. The family permanently moved to Cape May in 1945. Bob excelled at his studies, as well as athletics, competing in track and field, football, and basketball. He attended Ocean City High School for 3 years and graduated from Cape May High School his senior year. Bob was a proud graduate of Cornell University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in hotel administration, and letters in Track and Field and Cross Country. While at Cornell, he became a brother in the Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity. Bob continued running after college and, in the late 1970s at the Penn Relays, ran a 4:50 mile, which at that time was the world record for the over-50 age group mile. Bob was a generous contributor to his alma mater, Cornell, and funded several scholarships. After graduation, Bob enlisted in the army and was a 2nd lieutenant. He was stationed in Germany and helped run Rest and Relaxation centers for the Army. Upon leaving the Army, Bob returned to Cape May and ran the Colonial Hotel and Motel (now the Inn of Cape May and the Avondale) with his father, with assistance from his brother and sister. The family sold the hotel in 1986. While working at the Colonial, Bob met and married (in 1959) his wife of 51 years, Elizabeth Mousseau. They enjoyed a long, loving relationship and had numerous adventures over those years. After his wife passed away, the late Betty Steger, a longtime friend, became Bob's companion. They shared many great experiences together, including winters in the family condo in Highland Beach, FL. Bob was very active and involved in his community and belonged to several organizations. He was a 50-year member of the historic Cold Spring Presbyterian Church and served on the board of elders. He was the past president of the Men's Club, a lifetime member of the American Legion, a 62-year member of the Kiwanis Club, and a 65-year member of the Masonic Lodge of Cape Island. He was a former member of the Union League of Philadelphia and had been a longtime member of the Cape May Tennis Club, playing with his friends daily. Bob was actively involved with and supported Cape May MAC (Museums, Arts, Culture) since its founding in 1970. He was a tour guide for the MAC Cape May walking tours, exemplifying his love of history and of Cape May. Bob was honored in 2006 at the Chalfonte Hotel as a Cape May Legend. Bob was predeceased by his sister, Elizabeth (Betsy) Bassett and his brother, Raymond Fite, Jr. Bob will be dearly missed by his family and many friends, including four nieces and a nephew, Dorothy (Debby) Sweeny-Rights (and Jeff Rights); Henry Bassett IV; Wendy (and Chris) Staunton; Carolyn (and Craig) Smith; Karen Fite, sister-in-law Kathy Fite, and numerous grand nephews and nieces. Bob was lovingly cared for at home by Denise South, and Irma Barreto, for the last couple years of his life. Services will be held on May 18, 2024 in the Cold Spring Presbyterian Church, 780 Seashore Rd., Cape May. Visitation is at 11:00 am followed by the Funeral Service at 12:00 pm. Interment will follow in the Cold Spring Presbyterian Cemetery. There will be a reception at Price Hall (on the church premises) at 1:15. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Kiwanis Club of Cape May or the Cold Spring Presbyterian Church "in remembrance of Bob Fite." (Spilker Funeral Home, Cape May) info and condolences: spilkerfuneralhome.com

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