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Robert "Bobob" Campbell

March 4, 1943 - January 3, 2021

U.S. Veteran

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The world became a little greyer on Sunday, January 3, 2021 when Robert Campbell left it. How can you describe someone so colorful in only black and white? Bob was not a loud person, but he loved loud things: loud colors, loud cars, loud radios, loud TVs. His clothing filled every closet in the house and each one looked like a rainbow. You could see his colorful shirts, shorts, pants, or shoes coming from a mile away; he always stood out in a crowd.

Bob was quiet from the beginning when he was born in Raceland, Kentucky to Ralph Campbell and Ruth Campbell Specht on March 4, 1943. After graduating from Raceland High School, he entered the Air Force and became a military policeman. The Cuban missile crisis caused him and his high school sweetheart, Libby Smith Campbell, to quickly marry before his possible deployment. They will have been married for 58 years on January 5, 2021.

When he left the military, he entered the world of retail. He started working for Kresge Dept. Stores, which would later become Kmart. He worked at Kmart for 30 years and moved wherever they told him to go: Ohio, New Jersey, Maryland, Indiana, Michigan, and Virginia. He was a district manager for the apparel division for many years, then worked as the store manager in Roanoke, Va. The daily drive from Forest to Roanoke might have been too much for some people, but he loved to drive. In his retirement, he drove cars for Billy Craft Honda until just last summer. He also worked in the Pro Shop at Colonial Hills Golf Course at least one day a week during the season and golfed regularly with the Dog Pack and the THUGS.

If there was a game on TV that involved a ball going into a cup, a basket, or through a goal post he would be watching it — often several at one time. He was a diehard Kentucky Wildcats fan and would cheer on UVA or Virginia Tech depending on which daughter was nearby. His motto used to be “He who dies with the most toys wins,” but as he began to age, he started to appreciate the things in life that money can’t buy.

Bob is not gone. His sense of humor and patience will live on through his daughter Cindy Childress and husband Brady from Altavista, Va. His sense of style and devotion to family will live on through his daughter Stacy Thompson and husband Chris from Swoope, Va. His dedication to others will live on through his granddaughter Elizabeth Childress Burneson and husband Brandon from Richmond, Va.; His work ethic and love of cars will live on through his granddaughter Amanda Childress and boyfriend Dylan May from Lynchburg, Va. And his love of sports and quiet nature will live on through Campbell Thompson, from Swoope, Va. His devoted dogs, Delilah and Callaway, will miss having their daily walks with him.

Bob would have been lost to us much sooner had it not been for the outstanding care he received from the University of Virginia Heart Failure doctors and Valve Team. The nurses and attending staff within the UVA hospital cardiac care unit were miraculous and we could not have gotten though this without their support.

While our lives will be changed without him, we can only imagine the reception he received as he drove his yellow corvette through the pearly gates, wearing his navy pants, paisley sport coat, and an orange shirt and shoes. We take comfort in knowing he was welcomed by Conway Twitty, Marty Robbins, Porter Wagoner, his Granddad and Uncle Roy, his yellow lab Zach, and his neighbors and friends that he was anxious to see again. We’ll find him asleep in a beach chair one day when we all meet again.

Due to the compromised health of some family members amid COVID concerns, there will be no public ceremony.

Tharp Funeral Home & Crematory, Lynchburg, is assisting the family.

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