Robert Payne

Robert Charles Payne

Robert Charles Payne, former Coach, Educator, Motivational Speaker, Author, Civic leader, Newspaper Columnist, TV Host, and Businessman passed away on June 22, 2013 at M.D. Anderson Medical Center. He was 69 years old.

Services celebrating his life will be held at 10:30 A.M. Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at Family Church in West Monroe with Pastor Michael D. O'Neal and Pastor Michael Stravato officiating. Interment will be held in Hasley Cemetery under the direction of Mulhearn Funeral Home, West Monroe.

Robert Charles Payne was born in Monroe, LA in 1944, the son of Coach Howard Devone Payne, Sr. and Dr. Delores Beck Payne. He was a multi-sport Letterman at Neville High School where he graduated in 1962. He received his degree in Health and Physical Education and English in 1967 from Northeast Louisiana University. He played football for the Indians and continued his love of the game in Semi-Pro football for the Twin City Panthers and Professional Football in Canada with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1969. He continued his academics by receiving his Masters of Education in Administration in 1973 and his 30 plus hours from Northwestern State University in 1977. In 1987, he completed his Post Graduate Studies in Counseling from Liberty University.

Coaching and teaching were a life-long passion for Robert Charles. He held coaching and teaching positions at several schools; St. Fredrick , Lee Jr. High, Delhi , Epps, Winnfield, Natchitoches Central, Farmerville, West Monroe, and Claiborne Christian. While a coach and athletic director at Farmerville, Coach Payne created the slogan, "Big Orange" to unify the town. This same year he was named "Coach of the Year" in the state of Louisiana. He continued his vision of community building in West Monroe High School from 1975 until 1978 where he created, "Western Pride". His only year as head football coach, Payne took West Monroe High School to the playoffs for only the second time in 30 years in 1978, created his own brand of Western Pride Clothing, and at that time had the best record in West Monroe's history. Coach Payne left the coaching profession to open his own insurance agency for State Farm in 1979, where he was awarded Legion of Honor, Merit Agent, Millionaire Club, and National Quality Award for Health and Life Insurance.

While coaching and teaching were his first love, Robert Charles Payne also had numerous achievements in many other areas. In 1977, Robert Charles won a national speaking contest among 23, 000 participants. He was named one of the Outstanding Young Men of America in 1978 and named Honorary Mayor of West Monroe. He authored books; Building a Better You, Sacred Conversations, Jack, and From the Heart. He had a weekly newspaper column, radio program, and TV program. Over the years, Robert Charles served on the Board of Directors for the West Monroe Boys Club, West Monroe Rotary Club, West Monroe Dixie Youth, Northeast Louisiana University Booster Club, Chamber of Commerce, and the Cancer Foundation Board.

He is preceded in death by his father, Coach Howard Devone Payne; mother, Dr. Delores Beck Payne; and brother, Howard Devone Payne, Jr.

Coach Robert Charles Payne is survived by his wife of 45 years, Donna Damron Payne; sons, Robert Charles Payne, Jr. and girlfriend Kristen Frith, Andrew Beck Payne and wife Jodi Hutson Payne; daughter, Laurie Devone Payne; grandchildren, Elizabeth Grace Payne, Gracen Hope Payne, Kendall Beck Ford, Addelyn Faith Payne, and Hutson Beck Payne; brothers, Joe Beck Payne, Andy Payne and wife Anna McKnight Payne; and sister-in-law, Charlotte Ford Payne; father-in-law, John Porter Norris; numerous nieces and nephews; and his special pets, Pierre, Axel, Kit Kat, Oreo, Fluffy and Ninja.

Pallbearers will be Judge William Norris, Dylan Payne, Howard Devone (Trey) Payne, III, Drew Payne, Mayor Stein Baughman, Coach Mike Poole, Jeff Worley, Truett Nolan, and Bill Pippin. Honorary Pallbearers will be Coach George Luffey, Coach Chick Childress, Coach Jim Bruning, Chiles Carpenter, and Fabian Geisman.

Visitation will be from 4:00 P.M. until 8:00 P.M. Tuesday at Mulhearn Funeral Home in West Monroe, LA

A special thanks to Jenny Remsberg, Richard Richardson, Jr., Jimmy Russell, and Ms. Rita McClemore.

Memorials may be made to E 3 Youth Ministry at Family Church 320 Laird St. West Monroe, LA

Online Registry/Condolences:

Mulhearn Funeral Home

West Monroe, LA

Funeral Home

Mulhearn Funeral Home Inc
300 Mcmillian Rd West Monroe, LA 71291
(318) 387-3333

Published in The News Star on June 25, 2013