Robert D. (Bob) Sheets Sr., 87, of Evansville, Indiana, passed away peacefully at home on Friday, June 10, 2022 with his children by his side. He was born Dec. 28, 1934 in Shawneetown, Illinois to Charles A. and Marguerite (Locklar) Sheets.
Bob grew up with three sisters and graduated from Shawneetown High School in 1952 where he was the captain and a star athlete in basketball and baseball.
He married the love of his life, Shirley Ann Wilson, on June 20, 1954 at the Presbyterian Church in Shawneetown. The two of them were married for 67 years before she preceded him in death on March 21, 2022.
He will be missed but we take comfort in knowing that he is reunited with the love of his life. They had two children, Pamela and Robert (Bobby) Jr.
Bob graduated from Lockyear Business College. After graduating, he began a 42-year career with Indiana Wholesalers where he was the general manager. After retirement, he worked part time at Hamilton Golf Course and then became a greeter at Alexander Funeral Home.
He was a godly man who loved the Lord and was guided by his unwavering faith. On June 10 he finished the race and heard the words, "Well done, good and faithful servant."
He loved his family and was a Hall of Fame husband, dad and PaPa to five grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Bob lived a very active and full life. He was truly an extraordinary and hardworking man. He made friends with many and was a firm believer in giving your all to everything you did in life.
He was a member and involved in the following: Riverside Church; he was commissioned as a Kentucky colonel and admiral by the governor of Kentucky; lifetime member and past president of the East Side Optimist Club; a 60-year member and Past Master of Lessing Masonic Lodge; a 50-year-plus member of Scottish rite; a 33rd Degree Mason; York rite; Red Cross of Constantine; Royal Order of Scotland; York rite College; 50-year-plus member of the White Shrine; a Past Patron of the Robert Morris Chapter of Eastern Star; a 50-year-plus member, Sword of Bunker Hill; a lifetime member of the No Ruz Grotto; Downtown High Twelve Club; 34 Select Group and Royal Order of Jesters.
Bob joined Hadi Shrine Temple in 1963 and was passionate about the Shriners Hospital, helping children and was proud to be a part of the Hadi Shrine Circus for many years. He was Past President of Hadi Funster Clowns, was "Funster of the Year" in 1973 and in 2004 was elected to the Funster Clown Hall of Fame. As a clown, he put smiles on countless numbers of children performing in many circuses and parades.
In 1990 he became Potentate and then served as Chaplain Emeritus for 29 years. He was also chaplain of Hadi Temple Past Masters Club, a member of the Kachina Billikin Klub and a Past President of Hadi Cabiri, Shrine Luncheon Club, the Shrine Bowling and Golf Leagues. In October 2016, he was named International Shriner of the Month.
He was a friend to children and youth, whether serving as a Little League coach, making kids laugh at the circus or driving children to the Shriners Hospital.
In his spare time Bob enjoyed sports, playing golf, Thursday nights with his friends at the Shrine, watching Gunsmoke and John Wayne movies and he was a dedicated and enthusiastic St. Louis Cardinals fan.
Bob is survived by daughter Pamela (John) Paul and son Robert (Saundra) Sheets Jr.; grandchildren Katie (Patrick) Kelley, Abby (Brad) Angel, Chelsea (Adam) Pruitt, Zack (Samantha) Sheets, Kiley (Tim) Doherty; 14 great-grandchildren; sisters Paula (Joe) Minor and Peggie Coleman; and several nephews and nieces.
He is preceded in death by his wife, Shirley; his parents; a sister, Shirley Morris; and brother-in-laws, Clyde Morris and Ted Coleman.
There will be a visitation from 2 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 15, 2022 at Alexander North Chapel. A 33rd Degree and Scottish rite walk-through will begin at 6:30 p.m., a Hadi Shrine walk-through at 6:45 p.m., and a Masonic Memorial Service will be held at 7 p.m.
Visitation will continue from 9 to 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 16, 2022 with a Celebration of Life Service to be held at 10 a.m. at Alexander North Chapel, officiated by Pastor Jeff Long. Entombment will follow at Alexander Memorial Park.
The family would like to extend special appreciation to Heritage Hospice and a special "Thank you" to Nancy and Laura for the care that they gave. The family has designated The Shriners Hospital for Children and Heritage Hospice of Evansville for memorial contributions.
Condolences may be offered at www.AlexanderNorthChapel.com.