CAMARILLO, Calif. - Robert Michael Hand Sr., 73, of Camarillo, California went peacefully to be with the Lord on Saturday, August 24. He is survived by his loving wife of 48 years, Mary Franklin Hand and son, Robert Michael Hand, Jr. of Los Angeles. His two grandchildren, Dava, 11 and Luke, 9, knew him as Pop. He is also survived by his chosen family, Karen Harding Teague (Anthony), their children, Sophia, Samantha and Phoebe, and Joel Harding (Christina) and children, Bryce, Aidan, and Ryan. Mickey, as he was known to his friends, was born in Augusta, Georgia on April 10, 1940 and grew up happily there as the only son of R.B. Hand, an Augusta Police detective, and Elsie Hand, the colorful property manager of the building where they lived. He excelled in high school at Richmond Academy in Augusta where he was a star athlete and voted Class President. After graduation, he continued his education at the University of Georgia, earning his degree in 1963. While there, he kept busy playing both baseball and basketball for the university's teams and playing guitar and singing vocals in the rock and roll band The Celestials... a band he would continue to perform with and enjoy through the early 70's. He also played guitar with both B.B. King and Roy Orbison. In 1965 he met and married Mary Etta Franklin after spotting her in a car and tracking her down through a series of mishaps, one of the many stories he loved to tell that made everyone smile. Soon after in 1967 they completed their family with the birth of their son, Mike. Together, they made homes and friends in many places over the years...from Pompano Beach, Florida to Livingston, Alabama; Hattiesburg, Mississippi; Charles City, Virginia and Rochester, New York... always taking with them treasured friendships from their church and community. In 2002, the birth of their first grandchild in Los Angeles was all the motivation they needed to make the move across country to be nearby. They settled in Camarillo, California where they have lived at University Glen on the Cal State Channel Islands campus for the past 8 years. There, they have been blessed to make many good friends and enjoy being very active grandparents and members of their Living Oaks congregation. Mickey always had a twinkle in his eye, a funny story to tell or song to sing. He was a builder and a teacher and a beloved husband, father and grandfather. A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, Sept. 28, at 11:00 am, at Lakemont Presbyterian Church, 1000 Blue Bird Rd., Augusta, GA 30904. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Lakemont Presbyterian Church.
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Published in The Augusta Chronicle from Sept. 26 to Sept. 27, 2013