Robert L. Sterling, age 84, died on Tuesday, June 7, 2022, in Lamesa, Texas.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, June 11, 2022 at 10:00 a.m. at Crestview Baptist Church with Charley Shook officiating. Arrangements are under the direction of Branon Funeral Home.
Visitation will be held Friday, June 10, 2022 from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Branon Funeral Home.
Robert Lee Sterling was born on December 2, 1937, in Lake Worth, Florida, to Edward John Sterling and Phoebe Almeda (Ball) Sterling. He attended school in Lake Worth through his sophomore year and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in October 1955.
He spent 20 years in the military service. Following boot camp at Lackland Air Force Base, he attended Technical School at Lowery Air Force Base in Denver, Colorado. On the completion of his training, he was assigned to Altus Air Force Base, Altus, Oklahoma, where he worked on B-47 Bombers. After one year, he was transferred to Dyess Air Force Base in Abilene, Texas where he met his first wife, Alfrieda Kiefer. The two married in June, 1961 and were transferred to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida.
In March 1963 their first daughter, Sheila Renee was born. That same year they transferred to Mountain Home Air Force Base, Mountain Home, Idaho. In 1964 he attended a second Technical School in Denver where he was trained to work on F-4C Phantom Fighter Bombers. Following his training, he was transferred to George Air Force Base, Victorville, California. In December of 1965 he was deployed to DaNang Air Force Base in Vietnam for one year.
In March 1966 the couple’s second daughter, Bobbi Ruth was born. When he returned from Vietnam, he was stationed again at George Air Force Base in California. In 1969 he and his family were transferred to Yakota Air Force Base in Japan and then to Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa. His last assignment was Eglin Air Force Base in Fort Walton Beach, Florida where he retired in November of 1975 after 20 years of service to his country.
In May of 1994, his first wife, Alfrieda, passed away in Lamesa, Texas following a long fight against cancer. In 1996 he began working in Wyoming where he met Jo Anne (Sittre) Sterling who had been widowed two years earlier. The couple was married in May of 2000.
From 1998 to 2000, he participated in fourteen evangelistic mission trips to various South American countries, and one to Mexico, through International Commission. This work was always held in Southern Baptist Churches.
For many years, he traveled to Mexico in the summer with the Lamesa Texas Southern Baptist Association to assist with Vacation Bible Schools. Following his marriage to Jo Anne, the couple continued that ministry in Mexico, as well as participating in other mission opportunities in Argentina, Canada, and the United States.
The couple began wintering in Yuma, Arizona in 2007, living at the Yuma Proving Grounds, a small Army Base north of Yuma, where the faithfully served in the Post Chapel, but they loved the summers in Wyoming, and they remained active at Lander Valley Baptist Church where he served as a deacon and trustee. He loved the mountains of the west and enjoyed four-wheeling and snowmobiling.
Mr. Sterling is survived by his wife of 22 years, Jo Anne Sterling; daughters, Renee Dickerman; Bobbi Stilwell and husband Will; four biological grandchildren, Chad (Shaina) Lasater, D’Shawna Dickerman, Sterling Scott (Amy) and Shayla Scott (Nando) ; and six great-grandchildren, Caden, Alayna, Brooklynn, Aiden, Ezra, and Blaze; step children, Debra Mitchell and Kris Collins; four step-grandchildren, Tami, Jake, Luke and Galen Mitchell; and three step-great grandsons, Tavis, Bryker and Kamden Mitchell.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Alfrieda; his father, John; mother, Phoebe; sister, Judy Smith; brother, Leroy Edward Sterling; and step- daughter, Cynthia Moore.
Memorials may be made directly to International Commission (Evangelism Ministry), at 260 Continental Drive, Lewisville, TX 75067 or to Lander Valley Baptist Church at 790 South Ninth, Lander WY 82520.
To send condolences online, please visit www.branonfuneralhome.com
– Press-Reporter obituary services