Remembering Robert Vernon Houlehan, beloved kindergarten teacher, radio host, wine lover

He taught at Washington Elementary School and had a jazz program on KJAZ until it folded.

Robert Vernon Houlehan
1/29/1928-11/8/2019

Our beloved Bobby left town in November on his way to the Paris in the sky. Born in Detroit, a lifelong Tiger fan, he joined the Air Force after high school. After his service, he played saxophone in the marching band at Michigan State University. His California debut came with the Spartans 1954 Rose Bowl win. He left Michigan for the Big Apple to study at Julliard for the next five years then headed to California by way of Mexico.

Work in California led him to a teaching credential and for decades he was a favorite Kindergarten teacher at Washington School in Berkeley. His vast knowledge of jazz led him to work at KJAZ. His radio show “Bird, Prez, and other Mothers,” lasted until the station was sold in 1994 when he signed off for the station at midnight.

Bobby’s third passion was wine. He was a world traveler, master taster, and wine educator. Bobby is survived by loving nieces and nephews, friends throughout the world, and many favorite bartenders.

A celebration of life will be held on what would have been his 92nd birthday at his last favorite bar at the Doubletree Hotel Bar in the Berkeley Marina on Wednesday, Jan. 29, at 2 pm.