Weather Forecast


Robert Bruce Buchanan

Robert Bruce Buchanan

Robert Bruce Buchanan passed away on Sunday, August 6, 2017.

He was a highly regarded member of his legal profession and local community, a treasured friend and beloved husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. Beyond his law practice, Bruce was also an accomplished vocalist who sang with various choral groups, an avid athlete and a life-long philanthropist. His brilliant sense of humor was his hallmark and will forever be remembered by all those he knew. He was born in Chicago, Ill on February 9, 1925 to Arthur Alexander and Blodwen Roberts Buchanan and grew up in Elmhurst, a suburb of Chicago. He graduated from Lawrence University, Appleton, WI in 1948. He left school his junior year to serve with the 100th Infantry Division in Europe during World War II and returned to complete his senior year after being injured. Bruce was then awarded a Combat Infantryman's Badge, a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. He went on to pursue his law degree at the University of Wisconsin School of Law and matriculated in 1951. He began practicing law in Duluth in 1951 with the firm of Wheeler, Burns & Buchanan. The firm merged with Fryberger, Smith & Frederick, becoming Fryberger, Buchanan, Smith & Frederick at which Bruce was a senior partner until his retirement in 2000. He believed in a life of service and the organizations he supported were a reflection of that commitment. He was a member of the American Colleges of Trust and Estate Council and served as president of the Eleventh Judicial Bar Association. He was the Director, Trustee & President of the Duluth YMCA, Director and Vice President of St Luke's Hospital, Director and President of the Kitchi Gammi Club, Deacon and Trustee of Pilgrim Congregational Church, Director of Oneida Realty Company, Co-Trustee of the Whiteside Charitable Trust & Whiteside Scholarship Trust. He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Betty; children Sarah Graves (husband John), Tulsa, OK; Patricia Buchanan, Burlingame, CA; Robert Bruce Buchanan, Jr (wife Becky), Duluth, MN; James Wheeler Buchanan (wife Roxanne) Mendota Hts, MN; and Amy Anderson (husband Sam), Waterloo, IA. He was the proud grandfather to Garrett Graves (wife Madison, great grandchildren Austin and Hensley), Adam Graves (wife Abby), Benjamin Buchanan (wife Lisa, great grandchildren Scarlett and Alexander), Joseph Buchanan (fiance Brittani), Andrew Buchanan (wife Hannah), Jackson Buchanan, Wes Anderson (wife Emily, great grandchild Winnie), Bryce Anderson and Julia Anderson. Though he is no longer of this earth, his spirit will live on in our hearts forever. May he now rest in eternal peace. The family wishes to thank the assisted living and the memory care staff at Ecumen Lakeshore for their kind care.

Memorial Service: 1 PM Monday, August 14, 2017 at Pilgrim Congregational Church, 2310 E 4th. St. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Duluth YMCA or the Duluth Public Library. Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, Duluth, 218-727-3555.