Lt. Col. Robert Sherman (Bob) Masters (Ret.), who was adored by family and friends alike, ended his battle with lymphoma on June 4, 2013, at the age of 81. Originally from Salem, he was living in San Antonio, Texas at the time of his death. Graduates of Roanoke College, where he and his beloved Bettie Sue met, Bob and his identical twin brother, Miles, completed Naval Flight Training in Pensacola, Fla., and Bob was selected to fly jets--a dream fulfilled. He served in the United States Marines for 27 years, flying single engine fighter jets on active duty in Japan and remaining in the Reserves.
He earned his Masters in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina, and took his first job with Scientific Products (S/P) of American Hospital Supply Corporation. Bob was a multi-tasker, at one time a Sales Manager at S/P, owner-operator of Master Plan Travel Agency, and a pilot of F8U Crusaders out of the Naval Air Station at Dallas.
His sense of humor was legendary and his wit was sharp. The word "adored" is repeated over and over as condolences pour in over his loss. Bob Masters was a totally self-confident man who needed no awards, plaques or kudos to reassure him, and his modesty was legendary. He empowered everyone he ever knew by lending them his many skills, talents and aid when needed.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Miles Sherman Masters and Margaret Aldrich Chamberlain Masters. He is survived by his loving wife, Bettie Sue Masters; his daughters, Diane Elizabeth Masters and Deborah Ann Masters Camitta; and their spouses, Mark Thomas Iwinski and Michael G.W. Camitta. His love for and pride of his grandchildren, Christopher Lane Masters Camitta, Caroline So-Yeong Camitta and Zoë Genevieve Iwinski Masters, was unsurpassed. Bob is also survived by his identical twin brother, Miles Husted Masters and wife, Madeline; sisters, Elizabeth Lee Masters and Virginia Masters Leonard and husband, Dan; sister-in-law, Dorothy Siler Roberson and partner, James Chisom; brothers-in-law, Wendell Hamilton Siler Jr. and James O. Roberson; adoring nieces; nephews and their spouses, Margaret Miles Leonard Clark (Wayne Clark), Chamberlain Ann Masters Miller (Jan M. Miller), Elizabeth Lynn Leonard Ryan (Pat Ryan), Helen Stuart Masters Durham (Lucian A. Durham III.), DeStacy Roberson, Virginia Roberson and Ross Owen Roberson (Michelle Roberson). He will also be missed by his great-nieces and nephews, Lucian Archambault Durham, IV, Ryan Nicholas Miller (Christen Miller), Coleman Barret Miller, Ann Husted Durham McGowan (Lucas McGowan), his namesake, Robert Chamberlain Durham, Dana Virginia Ryan, Sean Patrick Ryan, Megan Roberson and Owen Roberson.
A memorial service is planned at Salem Baptist Church at 11 a.m. on June 29, 2013. There will be a time of visitation and a luncheon in the church fellowship hall immediately following the service. The family requests that donations be given to The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. (www.lls.org).
For online condolences please visit www.oakeys.com.
Published in Roanoke Times from June 10 to June 29, 2013