HAMPSTEAD — Bobby Maxwell Andrews, born in Keyser, W.Va., on Sept. 30, 1925, to Wheeler and Lola, passed away Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017, at his home in Hampstead, N.C.
Bob was a loving father to Sharon (Poul), David (Cindy) and Terry (Mona); doting grandfather to Melissa, Robert, Hunter, Jennifer and Christina; and proud great-grandfather to Kayleigh, Savannah, Teagan, Sam, Peyton, Owen, Jace, William and Helena. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Helen. Bob was loved greatly and will be dearly missed by his family and close friend and caregiver for the last eight years, Annie Herring.
After spending his childhood in the coal mining communities in the Georges Creek Valley, Maryland, Bob found the second love of his life, the U.S. Marine Corps. Known to his Marine Corps brothers as “Andy Andrews,” Bob retired from the corps as master sergeant, having served in World War II, where he earned a purple heart in the Pacific Theater, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Bob embodied and lived by the Marine Corps motto, Semper Fidelis, and instilled a love of country in his children and grandchildren.
After World War II, Bob tried his hand at chicken farming before returning to the U.S. Marine Corps. After his retirement, he managed the cable yard at GTE. Although he left high school early to enlist in the Marines for World War II, Bob was a lifelong student who later earned his GED. He loved learning and was eager to find knowledge anywhere and in anyone. He was a story teller like no other and could spend hours talking with his family and friends, sharing the experiences and lessons he learned over the course of his 91 years.
During his military service, Bob learned the art of jewelry making and found great joy in creating treasures for Helen. He loved traveling, driving the highways and back roads of the country he loved, with his wife by his side. He often said the best days were the ones where they only made 50 miles because it meant they had found something worth stopping for and exploring. Bob loved gardening and cooking and never met a cup of coffee he didn’t like.
He devoted his life to his family and country. We are lucky and proud to have had the honor of calling him ours.
Bob was a widower after 63 years of blessed marriage, and we can all take comfort that he is reunited with his Helen Louise, whom he had missed dearly these last eight years.
A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Monday, Jan. 16, at Andrews Hampstead Chapel. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service. Interment will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17, in Coastal Carolina State Veterans Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Lower Cape Fear Hospice, 1414 Physicians Drive, Wilmington, NC 28401, or www.hospiceandlifecarecenter.org.