Michael Thomas Roberts, 61, of Advance, N.C., passed away Friday, Oct. 18, 2013, at Wake Forest Baptist Health Center. Mike was born in Little Rock, Ark., on Feb. 13, 1952.
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He was preceded in death by his parents, Bob and June Roberts.
He is survived by: his best friend and wife of 42 years, Phala Lea Roberts; two "sugarbear" daughters, Kristi Bennett and husband, Rick of Tampa, Fla., and Sara Hepler and husband, John of Clemmons, N.C.; five precious grandchildren, Gillian, Aedan, and Rhys Bennett, and Jackson and Austin Hepler; a brother, Dana Roberts and wife Jean of Hawkins, Texas; a sister, Cindy Allen and husband, Ken of Texarkana, Texas; and several nieces; and nephews.
Mike possessed a great desire to serve the Lord through music, missions, and teaching small groups. He had a true servant's heart. Many would call him a jack-of-all-trades. He loved building furniture, camping, traveling, learning how to play new musical instruments, and sharing his interests with each of his grandchildren.
He received his undergraduate degree from Texas A&M University and a Master of Business Administration from Averett University. He especially enjoyed following his Fightin' Texas Aggies! He worked for Virginia Cooperative Extension as a farm business management agent and most recently for NC State University as an extension agricultural economist. He found great joy in helping people have successful farm businesses, including writing his weekly Roberts commodity report. Mike was a well-respected innovator in his field, and he will be remembered for his contributions.
A graveside service will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013, at Tulip Cemetery in Tulip, Ark., Ruggles-Wilcox Funeral Home, Arkadelphia, Ark. A celebration of life will take place at Colonial Heights Baptist, Colonial Heights, Va., details pending.
The family suggests that donations be considered in Mike's memory to Carolina Donor Services, 909 E. Arlington Blvd., Greenville, NC 27858 or Center Grove Baptist Church, Mission Scholarships, 8750 Lasater Road, Clemmons, NC 27012.
Ruggles-Wilcox Funeral Home - Arkadelphia
517 Clay St.
Arkadelphia, AR 71923
Published in The Progress-Index on Oct. 20, 2013