Robert E. Setser
July 21, 1940 - October 29, 2020
Lt. Colonel Robert "Bob" Earl Setser, USMC Retired, 80, passed away peacefully on October 29, 2020 in Carlsbad, California following a long illness. Born on July 21, 1940 in Carmi, Illinois, he was the eldest son of the late Robert Leslie and Amy Grace (Simms) Setser.Bob graduated from Carmi Township High School in 1958, and went on to pursue a Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Arts from Murray State University in Kentucky. As the first in his family to attend college, Bob's mother always said that his graduation day was the happiest and saddest day of her life. Upon graduation, Bob was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. He proudly spent the next 26 years fighting for and serving his country, including two tours of duty during the Vietnam War. As a Lieutenant Colonel, Bob retired from the USMC in 1988 and settled in Carlsbad, California.For his service, Bob received the Silver Star Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal with Combat V, Gold Star in lieu of the 2d Navy Commendation Medal, Two Presidential Unit Citations, a Navy Unit Commendation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal with five stars, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal with palm & frame, the Combat Action Ribbon, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, the Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm Unit Citation, and the Republic of Vietnam Civil Action Unit Citation.After retiring from the Corps, Bob owned and operated Compton's Formica Shop in Oceanside, California. After a few years, health issues forced him to fully retire and enjoy life. If Bob was not hunting or "piddling" in his garage, he was fishing on the lake. Bob was most at peace fishing with his brother Rodger and good friend, Colonel Rufus Bowers, USMC Retired.In addition, Bob enjoyed reading and spending time with his family and friends. He was proud to be a Marine, but even prouder to be a Granddad.Bob is survived by his loving wife of 53 years, Phyllis (Lester) Setser; two daughters, Amy (Rob) Cochran and Katie Unland; and four grandchildren, Abby and Andrew Cochran and Noah and Hannah Unland. He is preceded in death by his parents and brother, Rodger "Podge" Setser.Semper Fi.A private graveside service will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a future date.
Published in San Diego Union-Tribune from Nov. 13 to Nov. 15, 2020.