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Sterling Hampton


1935 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Sterling Hampton Obituary
June 18, 1935 - September 30, 2016 Sterling Hampton, Jr., 81, a resident of View Park, CA, passed away on September 30, 2016. He was born in Banks, AR on June 18, 1935. As a young man, he pursued a career in the entertainment industry as a singer and traveled across the United States with his best friend Johnny "Guitar" Watson, to many entertainment venues where they performed together. During their travels, they would associate and sometimes perform with many of the all-time great Blues, Rock 'n' Roll and Soul Music stars, such as Sam Cooke, Jesse Belvin, Etta James, The Medallions and members of the Drifters, among others. He was also a song writer. His singing career was cut short when he was drafted by the United States Armed Forces during the late 1950's. Mr. Hampton served in the United States Army as a logistics support heavy truck driver, and during a tour in South Korea was responsible for the prompt, safe delivery of ordnance, fuel and other vital military supplies, often under adverse conditions. During his service in the Republic of Korea, he was named United Nations Soldier of the Year. After completing his service obligation, Mr. Hampton returned home to Los Angeles and embarked upon a 51 year career in public transportation as a Bus Operator. Again, her was tasked with the prompt, safe daily delivery of citizens to and from their destinations or transitions, often during adverse conditions. He was regularly assigned to the 212 route on Crenshaw Boulevard, between Inglewood and Hollywood and, as a testament to his wisdom, patience and overall skill as a bus operator, he was entrusted to perform the additional duty of Line Instructor. In 1996, Mr. Hampton was recognized as the Los Angeles Region MTA Operator of the Year. It should be noted that, at the time of this award, he had never taken time away from assignment due to illness in more than thirty years on the job and had never had a preventable traffic collision during that period while on duty. Sterling Hampton, Jr. is survived by his wife of 56 years, Etta M. Hampton, his sister, Gerthreen Hampton, his children, Sterling III, Vincent, Darryl; daughters Diane and Tracy Hampton and their families, including seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, and a host of nieces, nephews cousins and friends.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Oct. 11, 2016
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