Reuben John Pillsbury, 35, of Oakland, CA, passed away in San Francisco, CA, on March 18, 2017.
He was born in Lafayette, IN, on Sept. 26, 1981, to Edward and Brenda Pillsbury. His family moved to Indianapolis, IN, in 1982. While attending Mt. Comfort Elementary School, Mt. Vernon Middle School and Mt. Vernon High School, Reuben was active in the Boy Scouts and in the middle and high school band. He played several percussion instruments and competed in school competitions on the xylophone and drums. He worked summers as a counselor at Camp Belzer, the Crossroads of America Cub Scout day camp. Reuben especially enjoyed outdoor activities. He developed valuable camping skills as a member of Firecrafter and strong leadership skills in White Stag. His interest in low impact hiking and camping in the West was ignited by two trips to Philmont Scout Ranch, a high adventure camp in Cimarron, NM.
Following his graduation from Purdue University with a B.S. degree in Environmental Plant Studies in Dec. 2004, Reuben moved to California to fill a nine month Student Conservation Association intern position with the National Park Service. He was a member of the California Exotic Plant Management Team that traveled to the national parks to conduct invasive plant surveys and control. He stayed on in California to work on habitat restoration in the San Francisco Bay area for Richmond Bayshore Stewards and for Shelterbelt Builders Inc. In 2008, Reuben took classes at City College of San Francisco to become certified in geographic information systems (GIS). For the next nine years he worked as a GIS specialist for AMEC Foster Wheeler in Oakland, CA. He belonged to and did volunteer work for BayGeo, a non-profit organization for users of geospatial technology, people new to mapping and GIS specialists. For his own interest, Reuben had started plotting native and invasive plants in the Oakland wetlands.
Over the twelve years he resided in California, Reuben pursued his love of the outdoors by hiking and camping in many of California’s state and national parks. He most recently participated in the Montara Mountain Half Marathon along the coastal ridge trails near Pacifica, CA. He also liked attending outdoor music fests with friends. Reuben was very fond of traveling to Vermont for family weddings and reunions to be with the extended family that he did not have the opportunity to see often.
On Saturday, August 5, 2017, Reuben’s ashes were interned in the Pillsbury family plot in the Shelburne Village Cemetery in Shelburne, VT. Following the graveside service, a family Celebration of Life was held at his uncle and aunt, Keith and Penny Pillsbury’s residence in Burlington, VT.
Reuben is survived by his parents, Edward and Brenda Pillsbury of Indianapolis IN; his sister, Laura, and her husband, Lucas, and their twin daughters, Leota and Opal Wyant of Hyattsville, MD; his stepgrandmother, Johnnie Doyle of Post Mills, VT and numerous Pillsbury and Doyle aunts, uncles, and cousins in VT, NH, MA, NY, WI, MN, and NM.