Robert Bigelow

Robert S Bigelow

Saturday, December 26th, 1953 - Tuesday, August 18th, 2020
Recommend this to your friends.
Share via:

Sign in to the Family Interactive Login

The Family Interactive feature enhances An Amazing Life. Authorized family members can securely access their loved one's memorial website settings at any time.

Share Book of Memories with a Friend

Please enter the name and email details so that we can send your friend a link to the online tribute. No names or addresses will be collected by using this service.

Email Sent

Your email has been sent.

To share your memory on the wall of Robert Bigelow, sign in using one of the following options:

Sign in with Facebook


Sign in with your email address

Your condolence has been posted successfully

Provide comfort for the family by sending flowers or planting a tree in memory of Robert Bigelow

No Thanks

Contact Funeral Home

Please enter your question or comment below:

Email Sent

Your email has been sent.

Robert's Tribute Fund

  •  Full Name
  •  Initials
  •  Anonymous
By continuing, you agree with the terms and privacy policy.

Robert's Tribute Fund

There may be a delay while processing. Please do not click the back button or refresh while a payment is processing.
Send Flowers
Guaranteed hand delivery by a local florist


Former NBA Player, Author, and International Speaker,

Robert (Bob) Bigelow, age 66 of Winchester MA, passed away suddenly on August 18th.
Bob grew up in Winchester and was a star athlete at Winchester High School. As captain of the men’s basketball team, he set scoring records and led the team to appearances in multiple state playoff tournaments.
As both a top student and a top basketball talent, he was recruited to the University of Pennsylvania, where he played under Coach Chuck Daly. During his time at Penn he emerged as a standout player. At Penn from 1973-1975, the Quakers earned three consecutive Ivy League Championships and three consecutive invitations to the NCAA Basketball Tournament. In his 1974-1975 season he led his team in field goal percentages and earned First Team All Big 5 honors. Bob was later inducted into the Philadelphia Big 5 Hall of Fame.
In the 1975 NBA draft, Bob was selected in the first round by the Kansas City (now Sacramento) Kings who took him with the 13th overall pick. His career also included playing for the San Diego (now Los Angeles) Clippers and the Boston Celtics.
After his NBA career, Bob spent two years as an assistant basketball coach at Tufts University, where he was afforded the opportunity to work with young players and to develop his own skills as a coach.
After coaching at Tufts, Bob completed his MBA degree at Babson College, where he developed an interest in entrepreneurial studies. Shortly after graduation, Bob co-founded a successful Service Quality firm, The MarComm Group. Bob worked to scale the company and later served on the Board.
At this point Bob returned to his real passion, sports, coaching and developing research-based practices to help both coaches and players. He devoted thousands of hours researching and lecturing about organized youth sports and its effects on children and adults. Since 1993, he conducted over 2500 talks and clinics worldwide. Bob was also selected as one of the “100 Most Influential Sports Educators” by the Institute for International Sport at the University of Rhode Island.
Bob also co-authored two top selling books on youth sports and multiple coaching DVD’s:
Just Let the Kids Play: How to Stop Other Adults from Ruining Your Child's Fun and Success in Youth Sports written with sports journalists, Tom Moroney and Linda Hall.
Youth Sports: Still Failing Our Kids - How to Really Fix It written with Doug Abrams
Among Bob’s many achievements and talents perhaps his greatest gift was his ability to genuinely connect with people. He did not care where you were from or what your status; he genuinely took an interest in you. When you talked with Bob you came away feeling as if he was your best friend. He was down to earth, no airs and genuinely interested in you and what you were doing, and if possible, how he could help get you there.
Bob was a true life force, full of energy, life and fun. He led his life simply but powerfully with an unquenchable passion to connect with and help those around him. At 6’7” Bob was in many ways a larger than life figure not only in height and appetite, but also in his ability to talk. That larger than life presence drew us to him and warmed our lives, and now that he is gone leaves an equally large void that we will struggle to fill.
Perhaps most central to Bob’s life was the deep love for his family and his extended network of friends locally and around the world. He was a much-beloved husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, and uncle.
Bob was married for 36 years to Nancy, the love of his life. Nancy coached the Tufts Women’s Swim Team for 36 seasons. Together they raised two boys, David and Stephen. Bob and Nancy’s first grandchild, Benjamin, the child of David and his wife, Noelle, was welcomed into the world just last week and is the source of sustaining happiness for the entire Bigelow family.
Bob is also survived by his three siblings:
Katharine “Kit” Bigelow an Internationally recognized religious freedom and human rights advocate.
Sanford “Sandy” Bigelow a PhD and Principal of Vanguard Global Associates
Edward “Ted” Bigelow, Pastor of Grace Bible Church in Colorado.
Graveside burial will be private and a Memorial Service will be held at a later date when larger gatherings are allowed. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Bob’s memory to Swim Winchester, PO Box 44, Winchester, MA 01890 or a charity of your choice.
Read Less

Sign Up for Notifications

Receive notifications about information and event scheduling for Robert
No funeral details available.


We encourage you to share your most beloved memories of Robert here, so that the family and other loved ones can always see it. You can upload cherished photographs, or share your favorite stories, and can even comment on those shared by others.

Private Condolence
Gabe and Rachael Baldini, Joe DiNanno, and other have sent flowers to the family of Robert S Bigelow.
Guaranteed hand delivery by a local florist

Kevin Moynihan

Posted at 06:25pm
Very, very sorry to hear this news. I crossed paths with Bob on some crazy levels over the years -- I got his autograph when I was a kid and he was playing for the Kansas City Kings at the Boston Garden 3/20/77. I then played pickup games with him at Babson College when I was a Freshman on the basketball team and he was getting his MBA. He was kind enough to spend time with us and we were thrilled. He kindly visited our locker room at Tufts following a tough loss for our final road game on 2/24/82 to a very good Tufts team. Finally, I crossed paths with him in St Paul, MN about '07 or '08 when he was invited to speak to parents at our kids school about kids sports, his passion. It was a great talk and it was great to speak with him again. Condolences to his family. -- Kevin Moynihan

brian suriner

Posted at 08:38pm
Dear Bigelow Family,

Very sorry to hear of Bob's passing. For many years, Bob came to Glastonbury, CT to speak to our players, coaches, parents and youth sport administrators. Much of what we teach and share in our baseball, softball and basketball programs are from Bob's books, speeches and conversations he had with our League President Don Longtin. Don consistently shared everything Bob wrote spoke about and shared regarding youth sports. Please know he has made an indelible impact on thousands of boys and girls in Glastonbury, CT.

For many years Bob's books, videos and writings have been required reading for hundreds of Glastonbury coaches. The impact of his teachings is in the thousands and it goes beyond the sports fields and courts of our town.

No doubt he spent many days and nights away from home inspiring others to listen, ask questions and "Just Let The Kids Play". Thank you for sharing him.

Brian Suriner
Glastonbury Little League Board of Directors

Sue Tendy

Posted at 12:55pm
I met Bob through his wife, Nancy, many years ago. I was struck by the fact that Bob’s gentle energy and kind heart was a great complement to Nancy’s similarly enthusiastic and untiring spirit. Together they have touched more lives, and will continue to do so, through their coaching careers than anyone will ever know. I can safely say that every tribute here written for Bob represents at least a thousand others that have had similar experiences.
My prayers are with Nancy, David and Stephen.

Bette Viano

Posted at 06:16pm
We have been thinking about Bob and his family a lot, and sharing our remembrances with each other as we go through the day. We have also been remembering the same things Ralph Roberto shared in his moving tribute to Bob -- Bob's sincerity and lack of pretense, how he loved to chat up anyone and everyone so all felt included, and how he never stopped being a kid. That love of life spreads so much joy. Our son Gabe's memory of Bob running into the cold, cold water at Crane Beach with all the kids proves that point. Bob's friends' children adored Bob and his sons were generous in sharing his affections with so many. And we know that Bob "alway showed up" -- even to Gabe's soccer games -- and with his proficient use of the phone (a lost art these days) he kept folks connected.
We'll be thinking of you all, and hoping that you find some peace and joy in knowing that Bob made the world a better place for us. Bette Viano and Bill Porter Boston, MA

Kathy Tirrell Johnson

Posted at 09:48am
My deepest condolences to Bob’s family. What a profound loss for so many who’s lives Bob touched. From the Nahant Tirrell family, Our profound sympathy to all the Bigelow family. 🙏🏻
Kathy Tirrell Johnson

Photos & Videos

Photo Album

Upload up to 10 images at a time, max 8MB each
Share by: