Dr. Robert J. O’Brien, J.D.


Dr. Robert J. O’Brien, J.D. died April 2019, age 82.  A memorial was held in May.  

Prior to residing in Buckhannon for 47 years and teaching at WVWC, Dr. O’Brien taught with the University of Maryland in Asia and German.  He received a BA in English from LSU, a MA and PhD from Iowa University, and completed law studies at WVU.  

He is a former state president of AAUP (American Association of University Professors) and WVACET (WV Association of College English Teachers) and a US Army veteran.  Arriving in Buckhannon, he shared his passion for chess and tennis with the community.  He enjoyed exploring cuisines and his flower garden.  He spent much time reading.

Dr. O’Brien’s personal collections have been donated to several libraries.  His extensive collection of Shakespeare recordings now resides at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

His writings survive in several reference books including WV History, Vol. 56, “Persecution and Acceptance: The Strange History of Discrimination Against Married Women Teachers in West Virginia”.  His last published book is “The Stasi Report: The Report of the Committee of Reflection on the Application of the Principle of Secularity in the Republic”.

Bob was an active stroke and aphasia supporter, a contributing member of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC), a fan of WV glass, and a member of The Museum of American Glass in Weston, West Virginia.

He was pre-deceased by his son, Robert, and ex-wife, Lucie.  He is survived by his daughter, Margaret, and her husband and two sons.  Much of Dr. O’Brien’s extended family, including three nephews, reside in Louisiana.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggest gifts in his memory to:

WV Public Radio (https://www.wvpublic.org/)

WV ACLU (https://www.acluwv.org/)

WVU Stroke Group (WVU Stroke Support Group / WVU Medicine J. W. Ruby Memorial / 1 Medical Center Drive / PO Box 8244 / Morgantown, WV 26506-8244.)

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