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Rev. Dr. Robert J. Lieffort

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Rev. Dr. Robert J. Lieffort Obituary

Father Robert J. Lieffort, 68, died April 2, 2013 at Indian River Medical Center in Vero Beach.

He was born in Green Bay, Wisconsin, earned his Bachelor Degree in Latin, in 1968 from St. Nobert College, DePere, Wisconsin, and from 1968 to1971 attended Catholic Theological Union of Chicago, Masters Division. He was then Ordained to Priesthood at St. Norbert Abbey.

"Father Bob", as he was known by many, served in many capacities, including Associate Pastor at St. Willibrord, Chicago, instructor at St. Willibrord High School, also in Chicago, Resident Director and Student Life Staff at the College of Chaplains, St. Norbert College, DePere, Wisconsin and Chairman of the Theology Department, John Carroll High in Fort Pierce, Florida. While at John Carroll, he was also an instructor for Music Education for the Elderly at Indian River Community College.

In 1978, he was received as an Episcopal Priest by Bishop William H. Folwell at St. Barnabas Church, Deland, Florida. Later, he served on the Council of Advice to the Bishop and elected for three terms by Diocesan Convention to the Ecclesiastical Court.

"Father Bob" was elected Alumni Associate Nashotah House and as a Fellow of the College of Preachers of the National Cathedral, Washington, D.C. in 1980. From 1979 to1995, he was Rector of St. Christopher's Church in Orlando, Florida then came to Sebastian as Rector of St. Elizabeth Episcopal Church. He was currently the Rector at St. Sebastian by the Sea, Melbourne Beach, Florida.

He received his Doctorate in Theology from Pacific Western University in 1986.

He is survived by his wife, Sandra Lieffort of Sebastian; son, Jeff Dowdy (Echo) of Orlando; daughter, Karen Dowdy of Orlando; brothers, Berwyn Lieffort (Gladys) and John Lieffort (Elsa); granddaughter, Hope Dowdy; and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Red Cross IRC Chapter, 2506 17th Avenue, Vero Beach, FL 32960.

Visitation will be 5 PM to 7 PM, Wednesday, April 10, 2013 at Strunk Funeral Home, Sebastian, Florida. Memorial Services will be 10:00 AM, Saturday, April 13, 2013 at St. Sebastian by the Sea, Melbourne Beach, Florida. Interment will follow in the Church Memorial Garden.

Arrangements are under the direction of Strunk Funeral Home and Crematory, Sebastian.

An online guestbook is available at


Published in FLORIDA TODAY on Apr. 7, 2013
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