Norbert J. Haas
May 21, 1936 - March 03, 2020
Visitation: Sunday 2-4 & 6-8 at Devlin Funeral Home of Cranberry Twp. 2678 Rochester Rd 724-772-8800
Service: Mass of Christian Burial at St Kilian Church Monday 11:00 a.m.
Norbert Haas, formerly of Franklin Park and Gibsonia, has told his last Earth-shatteringly bad joke. Norb left March 3 to find a more heavenly audience and to be reunited with his beloved wife, Barb.
With classic style, he rode out of Nashville on a tornado. And with his innate sense of direction, we have no worries he will find his way to where he’s going.
The owner of roofing contracting company Bell Industries for many decades, Norb had an encyclopedic knowledge of Pittsburgh and its surrounds. Whenever a destination was mentioned, he’d rattle off rapid-fire directions for three different ways to get there while we mortals looked on slack-jawed. The man was never lost.
Norb lived his life as a man of faith, from his elementary school days at St. Cyril’s through North Catholic High School, from which he recently celebrated his 65th reunion. He spent many years as an active member of St. John Newman and St. Kilian parishes, where he was voted most likely to cut the line at the fish fry.
Part of what made Norb so good at his job was his math genius. He did complex calculations in his head with ease. While we were still reaching for our calculators, he already had the answer. His math skills also drove his impenetrable strategy at cards, which pleased him as much as it vexed opponents who failed to see his logic. To him, executing that strategy was just as much fun as winning. And he loved to win.
Norb was a collector to the last. He and Barb loved the hunt, and they scoured antiques malls, auctions, flea markets and junk piles for elusive treasure. Woe betide the driver behind Norb when he spotted a garage sale sign. And our thanks to all the sellers who didn’t throw a punch when they’d priced something at a quarter, and Norb asked if they’d take 10 cents. His motto was, “It never hurts to ask.” And more often than not, he paid that dime.
One of Norb’s passions was raising tropical fish. If we didn’t know where he was, the first place to look was the fish room, with its dozens of tanks. That room was also a great place for him to get away from all the women in his life, if only for a little while.
Norb leaves behind his siblings: Will Haas of Zuni, Virginia, and Charles Haas, of Livonia, Michigan, identical twins who frequently sent identical cards; his sister, Helen Cornish, of Round Rock, Texas, who was his rock; Paul Haas, of Grove City, Pennsylvania, forever his little brother; and his foster sister, “Little” Marie Grande of Pittsburgh. He’s also grieved by myriad nieces and nephews and other family members who will miss his ready laugh, his generous spirit and, oh yes, those terrible jokes.
Before he left us, we asked Dad to carry along our love to our dearly missed Mom and brother,Craig, as well as to his parents, Helen and Web, Mom’s parents, Bert and Ed, Aunt Clara and Uncle Witty and all the other loved ones and friends who have left us.
We feel sure he is even now holding a hand full of high cards and making everyone around him laugh.
Friends can gather at Devlin Funeral Home of Cranberry Twp. 2678 Rochester Road 724-772-8800 on Sunday 2-4 & 6-8 p.m. to recall a life well lived, and a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Kilian Church Monday at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, we’re asking that donations be made to North Catholic High School, where Norb was forever true, so that students present and future can live and learn in faith.
Offered with love and sadness, respect and grief, by Susan Haas and Mark Miller of Leesburg, Virginia, and Cynthia and Chris Bullinger of Nashville, Tennessee.