Robert Lee Shad Sr., 85, of St. Marys, beloved husband of 65 years to Vila Cain Clark Shad, went home to be with the Lord on Nov. 30, 2016.
Mr. Shad was born on the banks of the St. Johns River on Nov. 16, 1931, at 225 Florida Ave. in Jacksonville, Fla. He died Nov. 30, 2016, on the banks of the St. Johns River at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Jacksonville. He was the son of John Paul Shad and Mary Talma Eliza Joiner Shad.
He was preceded in death by his mother, father and siblings, John Paul Jr., William A. Shad Sr., Baby Shad and grandson Joshua Ein Willis.
He is survived by his wife, Vila Cain Clark Shad; his son, Robert L. Shad Jr. (Terri); daughters, Mary Katherine “Cathy” Willis (James), Vila Joyce Shad Pitts, Lori Ann Shad and Melody Elaine Shad Crocker; 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
He was a longtime member of Grace Baptist Church and loved the Lord. His testimony of his faith in God was how he lived his life always helping others in some way.
Mr. Shad was a veteran of both U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps and served until discharged in 1953 as staff sergeant. He fought in the Korean War landing on Poson Bay with the Allied Forces and 1st Marine Battalion both in infantry and flight mechanic serving with Pappy Boyington of the famous Black Sheep Squadron and later with the Checkerboard Squadron with Maj. Ed McMann. The enemy knew that the Marines had landed and pushed the Reds north having Manchuria in sight when MacArthur called them back to maintain the 38th parallel. He was honorably discharged after being seriously injured in battle.
He and his wife Vila moved to St. Marys in 1953 where he was employed with Gilman Paper Company until his retirement as a pulp mill tour foreman in 1994. Throughout his career, he was well thought of, a man of integrity and knowledge and well respected. He was a dedicated and hardworking man who always provided for his family.
His greatest accomplishment was his family. He was very proud of his family and had an unquenchable love for them all and he enjoyed having them around him.
Mr. Shad loved people and enjoyed being around others and helping them when in need. He was a member of the St. Marys Masonic Lodge No. 109 where he served as master in 1965. He was a 32-degree Scottish Rite mason, a York Rite Mason and a Christian Knights Templar. He loved the Marine Corps and was a member of the Marine Corps League Kings Bay Detachment Southeast Georgia No. 1229. He loved these organizations and what they did to help others less fortunate. He was well respected and touched the lives of countless people and left us all a lasting legacy.
Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, at Christ Episcopal Church. Internment was in Oak Grove Cemetery with masonic and military honors. The family received friends from 5 to 7 p.m. at Allison Memorial Chapel in St. Marys.
Allison Memorial Chapel and Funeral Home of St. Marys was in charge of arrangements.