- April 28, 1950 - February 12, 2013
- Prospect Park, Pennsylvania
of Robert's Passing
Share This Obituary
Arrangements made by
Cavanagh Family Funeral Home
Memories & Candles
Mal's support and good humour was as reliable as the sunrise. In his short time at Radnor High he had a profound positive impact on more kids than I can count, in the classroom and out of it. Thanks, Mal, for sharing your life with all of us!
Posted by: John Johnson - Norfolk, VA - Friend Feb 24, 2013
As I reflect on my own life, I realize that there are but a handful of individuals who have had a truly profound impact on my life. Mal was one of these treasured few. From my first physics class in 11th grade, Mal was a teacher, a mentor and most of all a friend. I cannot quite express in words how he shaped me as a student and a person. He provided direction when I was adrift, he provided guidance
Posted by: Eric G. Schlegel Feb 20, 2013
I unfortunately won't be able to attend the service today, but I was thinking this morning about what the service will probably be like. How many lives this one man touched.
And I think that's one of the greatest lessons Mal taught - that in the end the greatest legacy someone can truly leave is his compassion. He will live on in so many people's memories.
I remember how excited he was to talk to me about Emanon. He knew physics wasn't
Posted by: Kristen Humbert - PA - Student, Class of '05 Feb 18, 2013
I was not fortunate enough to have Mal as a teacher, but I did teach at PHS when he was there. As I read the comments from former students I realize what a force of nature he was in those kids' lives. He epitomized all that a teacher should be and while he may have appeared unconventional, the students immediately realized what a blessing he was for them, not only as a teacher but also as someone to emulate
Posted by: elizabeth - media, PA Feb 18, 2013
Mal was the best teacher I have ever seen. He made it look so easy. He was always so engaging, passionate, and friendly in the classroom. To say that he loved his job and his students is a grand understatement. Every lesson was his best lesson. I don't know how he did it.
I remember that the first time I met him 14 years ago, I thought that he was the happiest guy in the school. The last time I
Posted by: Paul DelPrato - PA - Colleague Feb 17, 2013
I was a student of Mr. Mal in 1979 at Ridley Senior High School. Just yesterday, 2/14/13, I was driving on the PA turnpike and crossed the Susquehana River and saw Three Mile Island. Immediately Mr. Mal came into mind because I was in his physics class when the accident happened there.
As the incident was going on, Mr. Mal taught us about nuclear reactord and explained exactly what was going on. He was my favorite teacher and I was wondering
Posted by: Tim - Folsom, PA - Former student Feb 16, 2013
It would not be enough to say that Mal was truly the person who could fully understand his students.
It would not be enough to say he left a mark on people that goes even beyond nostalgia, bonding, high school.
It won't really ever be enough, because Mal made kids feel unbelievably confident, smart, and he gave them an anchor on their young minds that made facing the future that much more real and exciting. I miss him, and I will be telling my loved ones about him until I die too.
Posted by: A young friend - PA Feb 16, 2013
I was so saddened to hear the news that Mr. Mal had passed. I was so lucky to have had him as a teacher. As a student, I never had much confidence in myself, especially in his AP physics class where I struggled probably more than any other class, I was so fortunate to have a teacher who understood how hard I worked. He valued my efforts and even gave me extra credit for getting him chinese food for dinner
Posted by: Kim Glick - media, PA - Student and colleague Feb 16, 2013
Mal was my friend, probably the best friend I have ever had. He saw me through the best times of my life with sincere joy and walked with me through the worst times with a comfortable shoulder and ever preseent support. I know the scope of how many people he has roughed because I got to see it firsthand every single day over the last 20 years. We have travelled the country together but the place I will remember him
Posted by: Ed Somers - West Chester, PA - Dear friend and colleague Feb 15, 2013
As others have said, he was by far the best and most-influential teacher I ever had. I go between crying at this news and smiling, thinking back on his shammy-shirts and twinkling eyes as he described the adventures of the mythical physics bunny, or some of his stories about fishing with his dad. I remember him describing his classroom as sanctuary on one of the first days in class and that's exactly what it was for me a safe place
Posted by: Mollie Fredericks - former student Feb 15, 2013