Robert David Poiesz

Born: Thu., Jul. 8, 1954
Died: Thu., Nov. 2, 2017

Mass of Christian Burial

10:30 AM Tue., Nov. 07, 2017
Location: St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church

Reception and Greeting of Guests

11:30 AM Tue., Nov. 07, 2017
Location: St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church

Graveside Service

2:00 PM Tue., Nov. 07, 2017
Location: Gate of Heaven Cemetery

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Music by The Piano Brothers

Robert “Bob” David Poiesz

Lived a Life Filled with Love -

Robert “Bob” David Poiesz, age 63, of Mechanicsburg, born in Philadelphia on Thursday, July 8, 1954, passed at home surrounded by the love of his family on Thursday, November 2, 2017.  Bob’s son, Mark, shares, “his battle with the terrible disease ALS came to an end.  He's a legend because his spirit was undaunted.  He refused to give in, even in the face of an illness that offered no hope.  He didn't yield an inch of his contagious, compulsive humor.  He summoned impossible strength until the very end in order to maintain ideals that most others would abandon.  He kept love and determination front and center while so many others would abandon them in the face of helplessness.  His spirit won.”

Bob graduated from La Salle University with a degree in Physics.  He worked for the American Medical Association as the Principal Policy Analyst from 2013 until his passing.  Bob did not define his life by his work but rather made sure that his philosophy of life shined through as he gave it his best.  From 1990 to 2017 Bob participated in the Accredited Standards Committee (ASC) X12 group developing standards regarding Healthcare transactions in which he was a leading national expert.  Through countless meetings across the country in 26 years, Bob served in many capacities, including co-chair, Vice-chair, liaison, coordinator, and representative for and between multiple committees and subcommittees.  His career culminated with similar work at the American Medical Association, despite his battle with ALS.  Through the years, Bob was always teaching others to navigate and understand processes.  He was recognized in 2016 with the Edward A. Guilbert Award for Lifetime Achievement.  For his co-workers, he will always be remembered for his logic, expertise, and humor.  In later years at home-based meetings, some had the privilege of enjoying his signature cheese omelet with all the trimmings.

Bob lived his faith and was actively involved in his church, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Mechanicsburg, where he was a member since 1991.  He was a supremely loving, devoted, and proud father.  He shared a truly deep and romantic love, which always seemed fresh and new, with his sweet heart and wife, Cathy.  He learned to love so deeply from his parents whose love was deep and true.  Bob enjoyed making people feel important and the focus of the moment.  Christmas was special in part because Bob thrilled watching others find joy, especially his family.  He loved to make people laugh but never at the expense of others.  Bob believed that for anything to have real meaning, it had to be attached to love.  Love is a choice that is continuously reaffirmed.

Bob’s survivors include his loving and devoted wife of 38 years, Catherine “Cathy” Resh Poiesz; his mother, Rosalie (Maffei) Poiesz of Roslyn; his three children: Major Robert Frederick Poiesz of Fort Walton Beach, FL, Mark Robert Poiesz and his wife, Carla, of Hermitage, TN, Cynthia “Cindy” Rose Poiesz of Mechanicsburg; his four siblings: Frank, Dave, Paul, Mary; and his numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

All are welcome to join Bob’s family at his Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday, November 7, 2017, starting at 10:30 a.m. and at his reception and greeting of guests starting at 11:30 a.m. both at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, 310 Hertzler Drive, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055; with Reverend Msgr. William J. King celebrating.  Interment will follow at 2:00 p.m. in Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Mechanicsburg.  Cremation was private.

The family sends their most heartfelt thanks to everyone at Homeland Hospice who so lovingly cared for Bob during his illness.  Contributions in celebration of Bob’s life can be made to Homeland Hospice, 2300 Vartan Way, Suite 115, Harrisburg, PA 17110; or The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter, 321 Norristown Road, Suite 260, Ambler, PA  19002; or the Muscular Dystrophy Association, 222 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 1500, Chicago, Illinois 60606.

Bob’s family has entrusted his care to Myers – Buhrig Funeral Home and Crematory in Mechanicsburg, (717) 766-3421.  Read Bob’s full obituary, view his memorial video and portrait, and sign his official guest book at

Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change; 
courage to change the things I can; 
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time; 
enjoying one moment at a time; 
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; 
taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it; 
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will; 
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
forever in the next. 

- Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971)


Bob's Joke for the Reception

So, it came to be a certain guy’s time, and he passed away.  Never having been certain about an afterlife, he was pleasantly surprised to find himself standing before a large building with big, solid oak doors, and a gentleman in a tux with a clipboard.  He thought, “Not too bad – so it’s not pearly gates and St. Peter.”

He went up to the doorman and gave his name.  The doorman checked his list and said, “Yes sir, we have your reservation.  Table 2, go right in please.”

He went in and found table 2 – right at center stage.  The seats were plush and very luxurious.  He picked up the menu that was on the table.  The heading read “Afterlife Comedy Club”.  The menu included all of his favorite foods, each listed as “no charge”.  The drink page had all of his favorite drinks and wines, again as “no charge”.  He thought to himself, “Now this is heaven!”  He had a huge smile on his face.

After a short while, he looked up to the stage when he heard the MC say, “Welcome to the Afterlife Comedy Club. I would like to introduce our headliner, and your entertainer for the rest of eternity.”  At that point, he saw a man starting to walk up to the front of the stage.  His smile disappeared and he thought, “CRAP, this isn’t heaven!”

The MC continued, “Please give a warm welcome to Bob Poiesz!”

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Condolence Booklet

The Bernard Poiesz Family
   Posted Sat November 04, 2017
A fine man.....May he Rest in Peace and Rise in Glory.

Margaret Weiker
   Posted Sat November 04, 2017
I met Bob through our work at ASC X12. His passion for standards was inmeasurable and his work will impact the healthcare industry for decades. You could always count on Bob's humor and updates on his family - he was so proud of his children.

Kathie Shafer
   Posted Sun November 05, 2017
You are in my prayers and thoughts. Kathie Shafer

Eileen Eckhart Strauch
   Posted Sun November 05, 2017

I am sorry to learn of Bob's passing. You were such a loving and faithful presence to him during this period. May he rest in peace in the loving arms of his heavenly Father.


Heather McComas
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I am so very sad to learn of Bob's passing. It was such a pleasure to have him on our team at the AMA. His humor, warmth, kindness, and expertise will be truly missed. My thoughts are with Cathy and the rest of Bob's family during this hard time.

Janice Baker
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I admired Bob for the dynamic way he lived his life. He will remain an inspiration to many. I am sorry for your loss.

Gloria Davis
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I met Bob in 2009 through his work with Accredited Standards Committee and always appreciated his love of EDI transactions and policies and procedures. I learned much from him over the years and will miss him deeply. I will always remember him handing out chocolates at each meeting.

Jim Whicker
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I'm sure you'll be flooded with notes from those of us who worked with Bob via X12 and the AMA. He and I headed up a committee for several years together. Bob was always organized, thourough, and never hesitated to take on responsibilities to get the job done. Patient, efficient, kind, and enthusiastic are just a few words that come to mind. Bob was a reservoir of knowledge related to healthcare policy and standards. If we couldn't google, we always had Bob! He'll be sorely missed as a trusted colleague but more for the wonderful man he was. So sorry for your loss.

Doreen Espinoza
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
Bob will always be an inspiration, to those of us with whom he worked. I was fortunate to know him through X12. He was a good teacher and always ready and willing to help. He will be fondly remembered and truly missed. Thank you for sharing Bob with us.

Sincere condolences,

Denise Blackley
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I am so very sorry to hear of the loss of your husband. The video is such a loving tribute to him. The love you have for each other and your family radiated throughout. May your memories sustain you through the next days, weeks, months and years. You and your family are in my prayers.

Denise Blackley

Mark Carter
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I also met and worked with Bob at ASC X12. He was compassionate about his work at X12, always wanting to make difference and improving the Industry. His knowledge and experience will never be replaced. I was happy to have his mentorship and friendship. I will miss him greatly!

Al polanecKy
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
Bob and I reconnected after almost thirty years when I thought about him one night, tracked down his number and gave him a no- notice call. Not sure what compelled me to do that, probably something to do with college.

I went to Lehigh with Bob and because of Bob, met my future wife there and the rest is history. A very good history. Thank you Bob!

We're all a part of everyone we've met.

I'm so glad I met Bob. He and I were like Mutt and Jeff at BishopMcdevitt HS, joined together through our alphabetic proximity. I grew to really respect and like him. His wry sense of humor was so appealing and his sunny disposition was infectious.

He was just so solid. Nothing got him down, nobody intimidated him, and he just went about doing what he did best - being a good guy.

I'll think of him and all of you this week.

Al Polaneczky

Deb McCachern
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
I worked with Bob in ASC X12. He always brought chocolates to give out at each trimester meeting. He was a real asset to the X12 organization and always had quality of our standards in mind. He was such a kind and generous human being. He will be missed by us all. Blessings to his family; may his memory sustain you.

Mary and gene barr
   Posted Mon November 06, 2017
We're thinking of you and our prayers are with you! I'm out of town tomorrow and Gene is going to try to make it to the services. I love the video!
Mary and Gene Barr

Jean Narcisi
   Posted Tue November 07, 2017
My condolences to the Poiesz family. I also met Bob at X12 in the early 1990’s. He was a great leader and educator for all of us in the X12 community. His humor kept us going through the development of those very technical standards and I'll miss his guidance at the X12 meetings. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you at this difficult time.

Amy Cook
   Posted Tue November 07, 2017
It was an honor to attend the funeral mass for Bob Poiesz today. The eulogies were so wonderful - - the strength and love behind them, so impressive; they left me feeling very inspired to really live each day to the fullest and focus only on what really matters.

   Posted Sat November 11, 2017
I don’t know, nor have I ever met, Bob. But I’m reading his obituary in the Dillsburg Banner and I felt compelled to express my condolences. Clearly he was a man who was very loved, and who loved a lot! What a wonderful tribute to him! I’m sorry for your family’s loss of this wonderful soul. Your loss is surely Heaven’s gain. Especially in the Comedian’s Afterlife! Sincerely, Fran Regan of Dillsburg

Image: Tim Seed /

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