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Robert E. Thrailkill

Oct 28, 2012 - Staff

Robert E. Thrailkill of Riverton died Friday, Sept. 14, 2012, in Casper. He was 81 years old.

A memorial service was Saturday, Oct. 20, in Mesa, Ariz.

Robert E. Thrailkill was born Aug. 4, 1931, in Cheyenne, the son of Jay and Bernice Thrailkill.

He was raised in Riverton and graduated from Riverton High School in 1949. He attended the University of Wyoming from 1950 to 1951, and then served in the U.S. Navy as an air traffic controller from 1952 to 1956.

While in the Navy, he met and married his wife, Erma Gaul, on Nov. 26, 1953, in Punxsutawney, Pa. They had their first child, Janice L. Stanbury, in 1955 and a son, Robert J. Thrailkill, in 1959.

After concluding his service in the Navy, the couple moved to Riverton where Mr. Thrailkill owned a Chevron petroleum distributorship from 1956 to 1969. From 1969 to 1981 he was president of Katherine Gray Inc.

At the time, it was the country's largest manufacturer of decorated soap. The factory was located in Riverton and employed more than 100 workers.

During this time he was also a part-owner of the Teton Hotel in Riverton.

From 1981 to 1990 he was the president and CEO of Metro Cable Corporation, which owned and operated cable systems in 56 communities across many Western and Midwestern states.

From 1990 until his passing, he served as president of Bishop Capital Corporation. The company was headquartered in Riverton, publicly traded, and specialized in mineral investments and commercial land and real estate development.

He also served as director of the National Bed, Bath and Linen Association from 1976 to 1980, was director of the Chicago Gift Show from 1978 to 1981, and was the Master Mason of the Riverton Lodge No. 26 in 1963.

His family said he enjoyed golf, reading, traveling, watching the Denver Broncos and the Wyoming Cowboys, and spending time with his family.

Bob Thrailkill is survived by his wife, Erma Thrailkill; daughter Janice L. Stanbury; and grandchildren Spencer Jay Stanbury, Ainsley Thrailkill, Jennifer (Stanbury) Samuelson, David Thrailkill and Malory Thrailkill.

He was preceded in death by his brother Donald Thrailkill and his son, Robert J. Thrailkill.

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