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Robert W. Hughes

Obituary for Robert W. Hughes

August 26, 1935 - February 28, 2017
Austin, Texas | Age 81


Robert W. Hughes passed away peacefully, surrounded by family, on February 28, 2017 into the loving arms of his Lord and Savior. He was born August 26, 1935 in Ponca City, Oklahoma to Bill and Virginia Hughes.

Bob attended the University of Oklahoma where he played shortstop for the baseball team, was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, and studied chemical engineering. Upon graduation, Bob was employed by Conoco Incorporated based in Oklahoma City. After obtaining an MBA from Harvard Business School, he and his family moved to Austin and began his business career at Texas Capital Corporation, where he met Jack R. Crosby, who became Bob's business partner, dear friend, and mentor. In 1968, they formed a cable television company, Communications Properties Inc. Bob was always a visionary and after the sale of CPI to The Times Mirror Company he founded Prime Cable Corporation. Prime and its affiliates built, bought, and eventually sold cable television systems in many major U.S. cities. By 1997 Prime began diversifying and expanding into cellular telephone and telecommunications venture capital, forming Prime New Ventures and Prime II Investments.

A natural leader, Bob served on the boards of several publicly traded companies including Tichenor Inc./Hispanic Broadcasting Corporation(Univision), Hawaiian Wireless Inc., and Aloha Partners. While in the cable business Bob was an active member in the National Cable Television Association, serving as Chairman in 1978 and 1979. In 2009, he was honored to be inducted into the Cable Television Hall of Fame.

After buying the cable system in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, he and his family fell in love with the area. For over 40 years they spent many seasons enjoying all that Jackson Hole had to offer. Treasured memories with family and friends included golfing, hiking, fly fishing, river rafting, and the sheer beauty of the Grand Tetons. Here, Bob was exposed to the arts that captivated the landscapes and animals of the West, and he became a significant donor and board member of The National Museum of Wildlife Art. In an effort to preserve this special place, Bob supported the Jackson Hole Land Trust and was on the board of The Community Foundation of Jackson Hole.

Bob's passion was the game of golf. He spent countless hours developing his personal game and advocating the sport in Austin and in Jackson Hole. He was instrumental in the development of The Teton Pines Country Club of Jackson Hole and the Austin Golf Club. He was a member of Austin Country Club and Barton Creek Country Club for many years. It was on these courses that Bob taught his grandchildren to love the game, as well as advising them on many of life's lessons. Throughout the years he traveled to many golf courses around the world with his sons and friends. Some of these trips included traveling to Scotland, Ireland, and attending The Master's. He loved sharing his passion with his sons, colleagues, friends and ROACHES (Royal Order of Ancient Cable Hackers).

Bob was a philanthropist and over the years he graciously gave to many local organizations. Some of these organizations included The First Tee of Austin, St. Andrew's Episcopal School, Covenant Presbyterian, and Austin Christian Fellowship. Additionally, he served on the board of several non-profits including KLRU TV, First Tee of Austin, and The United States Junior Golf Association. Staying true to his Oklahoma roots, he endowed a Professorship Chair at The University of Oklahoma, and was a member of the Gallogly College of Engineering Board of Visitors. He was often recognized and some his accolades included The Texas Society to Prevent Blindness as a People of Vision honoree and The Charles Alan Wright Award of Excellence from St. Andrew's Episcopal School.

Bob gave credit to the Lord for his blessed life. Although he had many career accomplishments, his greatest source of pride was his family. He treasured time spent with them and was deeply involved in their lives. He always made sure everybody was taken care of. Bob was a positive influence on many people and will be remembered as a fair, honest, hard-working, and well respected individual. He was a great leader and manager, building long lasting relationships in business and in life.

He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Gail Anderson Hughes; sons Kyle and Craig (wife Molly); five grandchildren Kelsey Hughes (husband Grant Wilson), Preston Hughes, Will Hughes, Jackson Hughes and Sam Hughes; mother-in-law Wanda Anderson; daughters-in-law Roe Sharon Hughes and Carrie Frugé Walker; nieces Lori Markes (husband Chris), Allison Eve, and Rita Scranton; great nieces Grace Markes, Laurel Eve, and Andra Eve; great nephew Christian Markes(wife Grace); cousin Patricia Hughes; and many other nieces, nephews, and cousins. He is preceded in death by his parents Bill and Virginia Hughes, brother Larry Hughes, stepson Lee Walker, father-in-law A.R. Anderson, and brother-in-law Doyce Anderson.

A memorial service will be held 10 A.M. Monday, March 6 2017 at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 3003 Northland Dr., Austin, Texas with a reception following at Westwood Country Club.

The family requests memorial donations be made to The Darrell K. Royal Research Fund for Alzheimer's Disease, P.O. Box 5839, Austin, TX 78763, The Alzheimer's Association Capital of Texas Chapter, 3429 Executive Center Drive, Suite 100, Austin, Texas 78731, or a charity of your choice.

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Suggested Memorial Donations

  • The family requests memorial donations be made to The Darrell K. Royal Research Fund for Alzheimer's Disease, P.O. Box 5839, Austin, TX 78763,
  • The Alzheimer's Association Capital of Texas Chapter, 3429 Executive Center Drive, Suite 100, Austin, Texas 78731, or a charity of your choice.

Arrangements By

Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home North

3125 N Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX 78705
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