Robert Clarence Walters, Jr.
Robert Clarence Walters, Jr. (June Bug) was born on June 20, 1944 in Washington, District of Columbia to Robert (Bob) and Katrina (Inman) Walters and passed away on February 27, 2021 at UNC Health Southeastern in Lumberton, North Carolina surrounded in prayer by his family. Robert lived a remarkable life with humor, a voracious appetite for reading and travel, an open and friendly personality, and an abiding love to care for others and his family.
Robert grew up in Fairmont, North Carolina after his parents returned home to be closer to their aging parents. He attended Rosenwald High School, graduating in the Class of 1961. His childhood was filled with much love and a backyard full of neighborhood kids to play with around the clock. As a Rosenwald upperclassman, he met a cute freshman, Cherry Rose Townsend, who has been the other beat of his heart for 51 years. He loved playing trumpet in the marching band and swing dancing.
Following graduation, not sure of his career ambitions, he was employed locally, then decided to follow the path of so many others in the family and go to New York for employment in 1964. In New York, he worked at the Empire State Building and Gaytogs Clothing Factory in Inwood, New York.
In 1965, he was called to serve his country during the Vietnam era, enlisting at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, North Carolina in the 82nd and 101st Airborne Division. He was stationed in Vietnam from 1966-1967. During his time in service to his country, he received the following medals and commendations: Meritorious Unit Commendation; Vietnam Service Medal with 2 bronze service stars; Combat Infantryman Badge 1st Award; Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon with Device (1960); Marksman Badge with Rifle Bar; Parachute Badge; National Defense Service Medal, and Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm Unit Citation Badge.
He was honorably discharged in 1967 and returned to New York to work for Greenline Bus Company as a driver, a job he loved! For a person who never met a stranger, this was the ideal job for him; meeting people, telling stories and hanging out with friends. He and Cherry married on November 29, 1969 in Mt. Vernon, New York, and continued to enjoy city life.
It has been said for so many of us, “even though we move away from Fairmont, we never leave”. Robert and Cherry decided to move home in 1981. He began employment with the Robeson County Department of Correction as a Corrections Officer where he retired in 2006. It was a blessing because he faithfully cared for his aging parents until their passing.
At an early age, Robert accepted Christ as his personal savior and joined First Baptist Church where he remained a faithful member until his death. He served on the Trustee Board, Usher Board and Personnel Committee (Past-President). Civically, he was a member of the Fairmont Chapter of the Rosenwald Alumni, and a Lifetime Charter Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 8969.
Inseparable, Robert and Cherry loved to travel and never missed a special occasion to recognize family and friends, attending hundreds of graduations. Fun trips took them to Hawaii, Las Vegas, Canada, Virginia, the Caribbean, Michigan, the Blue Ridge Parkway, Mayberry, NC and on several cruises.
Robert is survived by family and many friends. This includes his wife of 51 years, Cherry Rose Townsend Walters; sister, Octavia (Melvin) Cabey of Midland, Michigan; cousin/brother, Crosby (Marlene) Inman of Chapel Hill, NC; niece, Whitney (Hassan Moss) Cabey and great niece, Finley Moss of Philadelphia, PA; mother-in-law; Odessa Leonard of Fairmont, NC; sisters-in-law, Belinda Simmons of Fairmont, NC, Verna Simmons, Linda Williams, Sharon Powell of New York, Shelia McMillian of Fairmont; brothers-in-law, Wilbert Leak and Wille Powell, Jr. of Fairmont, NC, Randy (Amanda) Powell of Charlotte, NC. A host of nieces and nephews, especially David Simmons of Fairmont, NC. And the entire Walters, Inman, Campbell, Townsend, and Mitchell families. Robert cherished the welcoming fellowship of adopted children, nieces and nephews too numerous to name......but he loved them all equally.
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