Bob Kipp: water world - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Bob Kipp: water world

by Sunny Layne

WATERLOO (KWWL)-- At age 82, many people decide it's time to slow down.

Not Waterloo native Bob Kipp.

He decided now is the perfect time to chase a Guinness Book Record.

His social security check is fueling a goal which will take him three years to complete! 

Meet Bob Kipp, someone you should know.

Bob Kipp loves boats.

"I work about two and a half months of the year, seven days a week, 10 hours a day," he said.

So far, Kipp has built three boats. This one, "The Class of '45," is number four.

He already sailed around the world once. But he always had a friend with him.

"So I have 100,000 miles in the ocean," he said. "Now I'll take a solo trip."

Now what started as a trip down the Mississippi River has turned literally into a record-breaking journey.

"Maybe I could take the record for oldest man sailing around the world which is in the Guinness Book," he said.

Born in Waterloo and living mostly in Florida, "With the alligators and the snakes."

Kipp is now 82 years old. He will be 83 by the time he sets sail around the world. He figures it will take him three years.

"I'll be too old if I don't get out of here now," he said. 

You'd think Kipp's family might feel worried letting an 82-year-old sailing the world by himself.

But then you see him in action. He's as agile as someone half his age.

"I just think it's kind of amazing that a fellow his age can do this himself," Kipp's nephew Mike Bently said.

As if circling the globe weren't enough, you could say Kipp kicked things up a note.

"Why not play the violin in the ocean?" he said.

"I just read about him and contacted him because I like adventure too," Louann Flaherty said.

Louann Flaherty will teach Kipp the violin through correspondence in different ports.

"I think with the two of us we're going to have a wonderful time," she said.

While receiving instruction, Kipp is also teaching others.

"The biggest thing I've learned: in life when you set a goal, go for it. If you don't make it, you set another goal," Bently said.

Kipp says, he's lost without a goal.

"Why is it important? Frankly, I don't have anything else to do. I'm 82-years-old," he said.

And when he's done with the sea, he just might take to the sky.

"Then what? Build an airplane," he said.

You can see Bob Kipp and his boat in the My Waterloo Days Parade May 30th.

He will ride in the parade when he returns from his trip around the world in 2012, except during that parade, he'll display his newest skill: playing the violin.

After his journey, Kipp is going to give his latest boat, "The Class of '45," to the City of Waterloo.

Reporter: Sunny Layne


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