Dr. Bobby Leon “Bob” Gosser, one of the namesakes of Ouachita Baptist University’s Gosser Hall, passed away Aug. 14 at age 80.
“Dr. Bob Gosser and his dear wife, Marianne, embody the best of Ouachita,” said Ouachita President Rex M. Horne, Jr. “Their love and legacy has a strong Ouachita theme. Their devotion is reflected in the lives of their children and grandchildren.
“We are a better university because of the Gosser family,” Dr. Horne added. “With the homegoing of Dr. Gosser, our gratitude and prayers are offered for the family. They will never forget this good man and neither will we.”
According to Terry Peeples, Ouachita’s vice president for development, “There are some families that are pillars of OBU and the Gosser family is one of those. Dr. Gosser would always say his children could go anywhere to college but he would pay for them to attend Ouachita.”
Peeples described Dr. Gosser as “an authentic follower of Christ and a witness and leader for his family, church, community and the Ouachita family.”
Dr. Gosser, a 1956 graduate of Ouachita, and his wife, Marianne, a 1955 Ouachita alumna, have been longtime supporters of Ouachita. The university’s Student Village, dedicated in 2009, includes Gosser Hall which was named in honor of Dr. and Mrs. Gosser. Five of Gosser Hall’s seven houses are named in honor of their five children, all of whom are Ouachita graduates: Jenny Gosser (’82), Bobby Gosser (’83), John M. Gosser (’84), Leigh Anna Gosser Askins (’89) and April Gosser Cook (’94).
During the groundbreaking service for the Student Village, Jenny Gosser said, “Family means so much to us, and our parents are the root of that. … We hope that in this place of gathering and community, students will make strong bonds and will become like a family.”
Dr. Gosser, a 1951 graduate of Little Rock Central High School, earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Ouachita. He and Mrs. Gosser were married in 1955.
Dr. Gosser also was a 1961 graduate of the University of Arkansas Medical School and completed his pediatric residency at the University of Oklahoma Medical School in 1963. In his distinguished medical career, he served in private practice in North Little Rock, as medical director of Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock and as chief of staff and chief of medical affairs at Baptist Hospital in North Little Rock.
A longtime member of Second Baptist Church of Little Rock, Dr. Gosser served as deacon chairman; director of youth, young married and adult Sunday School; and Finance Committee board member. Also active in the community, he served as president of the North Little Rock Rotary Club, the Boys & Girls Club and the YMCA board.
In addition to Marianne, his wife of 58 years, and their five adult children, Dr. Gosser is survived by 15 grandchildren.
A memorial service is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 16, at 3 p.m. at Second Baptist Church of Little Rock. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Ouachita Baptist University, Second Baptist Church or the Baptist Hospital Foundation.