Robert A. Vajda


Died June 25, 2008

College: Branford

Widow: Mrs. Elizabeth Vajda
291 Garden Grove Drive
Roseburg, OR 97470-9511

Children: Scott, 1965; Brian, 1968; Eric, 1970; Heather, 1974; Kevin Trautman; Stuart Trautman

Robert Allen Vajda M.D. was born in Cleveland Ohio on June 28, 1939. He attended Cleveland schools and after high school graduation, he attended Yale on scholarship. There he received a BS in chemical engineering. From there, he went on to graduate from Case Western Reserve in Cleveland with an M.D. He did his internship and residency in Portland Oregon at Oregon Medical School. Following completion of these programs he served in the Army and was stationed in Okinawa during the Viet Nam war. He served as the chemical weapons officer for the Pacific at that time.

Following discharge from the military, in 1972 he moved to Roseburg, Oregon where he had a practice in internal medicine. He served in many capacities during his time in practice. He was Chief of Staff for the local hospital and Chairman of the Board for the Roseburg Clinic during its formative years. He was highly respected and was known to be a great mediator and negotiator by his peers. Some quotes from his peers were “What I remember most is that Bob was the kind of physician we all aspire to be. He was dedicated, caring and thorough.” And, “He was a man who deeply loved his family, friends, patients, and people in general. He gave his best to all.”

He and Sherry had four children, and in 1979, he married Liz who added two more children to his family. He had a demeanor of following his dreams and all of the children have grown up with the expectation of success. As a consequence of this role modeling, all six children have grown into fine contributing citizens with families of their own who show these same attributes.

The things about Bob that were most memorable to his family were his love of collecting precious metals and burying them in the backyard or putting them in any of multiple safes and forgetting to let anyone else know the combinations, and the ability to fix anything that went wrong around the house. It seemed he could figure out how to fix most anything. And there must be nearly 500 keys around here that have no identification on them. Our neighbors all knew that if they needed a certain tool to do a job, Bob would have it.

His determination to beat his renal cell cancer was a goal that he was destined to lose. But it took five years for this to happen even though he knew one year of survivability was the consensus of the physicians who cared for him.

We all miss him but love to tell stories about him, our recreational vehicle travels and the stories he would tell us as we motored along.

—by Elizabeth Vajda


Robert (Bob) Alien Vajda, M.D.

Age 68, of Roseburg, Oregon, passed away on Wednesday, June 25, 2008, after a five year battle with renal cancer. He was born on June 28, 1939, in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of Vera (Majorossy) and Alfred Vajda. Growing up as a first generation American of Hungarian descent, he was a dedicated and resourceful man from a young age. He went to Yale University on an academic scholarship and graduated as a chemical engineer in 1961. After college he continued on to Medical School at Case Western Reserve in Ohio and moved to Portland, Oregon, in 1965, to complete his internship and residency at the University of Oregon Medical School where he and Sherry started their family. In 1969 he and his family were stationed in Okinawa where he served in the Army as a Physician and the chemical weapons officer for the Pacific during the Vietnam War. After being discharged in 1972 he moved his family, now with three sons, to Roseburg, Oregon, and started his practice in Internal Medicine. A daughter was born during this time. In 1979, he married Liz Vajda and they raised their families together, now making a family of eight with her two sons. He had a successful medical practice. He served as Chief of Staff in 1979, at Douglas Community Hospital. He also served as Chairman of the Board at The Roseburg Clinic during its formative years. He was known by his peers to be a negotiator and mediator. He and Liz retired in 2000 to go explore the country with their dog and enjoy their favorite pastime RVing. They spent six wonderful years visiting their kids and the grandchildren and just enjoying life with a little free time. Those that knew him knew he enjoyed the thrill of the bargain and traveled the country looking for great deals. We’ll all miss our updates on the price of Mexican bread while they were in Yuma. But mostly, Bob loved his family and friends, and he will be missed by many. He is survived by his wife, Liz Vajda, former wife, Sherry Vajda both of Roseburg and his four children, Scott (Jame’) Vajda of Seattle, Washington; Brian (Patti) Vajda of Portland, Oregon; Eric (Shannon) Vajda of San Diego, California and Heather (John) Grubbs of Denver, Colorado; two stepchildren, Kevin Trautman of Eugene, Oregon and Stuart Trautman of Portland. He also leaves one sister, Eileen Palsulich of Torrance, California and his eight grandchildren, Taylar, Koby. Joshua, Daymian. Makena, Turner, Jansen and Mercedes. Memorial services will be held at 10:30 a.m.. on Saturday July 19, 2008. at the First United Methodist Church Roseburg located at 1771 W. Harvard Ave in Roseburg. Oregon. A memorial has been established for the Reflection Garden at the new Community Cancer Center. Donations can be sent to the Community Cancer Center at 545 W. Umpqua Street, Roseburg, OR. 97471 or left at the service.