Robert Frank “Bob” Hill, 91, died December 4, 2012 at his home surrounded by family after a long illness. He was born at home on July 3, 1921 to Maston and Era (Shaver) Hill and was a long time resident of Oktaha. He came from the poorest of backgrounds, survived the depression staying in Oklahoma. He had to quit school in the 9th grade to help his dad with crops and to work in the fields. There were times his family had very little to eat but got by because of the closeness of the family. When older, he was able to find short time work on the railroad. After that he joined the Navy in August of 1942 during WWII and was assigned to serve on the USS Enterprise CV6. He attended the Enterprise reunions yearly most recently going to New York City this past July.
He was a very patriotic person who loved his country and loved educating those around him about their duty to honor and support the United States of America. He also was very firm in his belief that he and everyone should buy American.
During his time in the Navy and while stationed in California he met and married (Rusty) Sarah Marie Smith on December 10, 1944 in Ventura, California. After the war they made their home in Oxnard, California for 13 years where he worked as a diesel mechanic. In October 1957 he moved with his family back to his home place in Oklahoma and began raising cattle and acquiring several hundred wooded acres which he cleared and improved to productive pastures. He raised and sold several large herds of cattle before giving up ranching in his later years. While he no longer raised cattle he was an avid animal lover always having a favorite dog. He always made room for strays as well.
He was a self-made man who could fix anything and learn anything by reading and researching. He received his GED in 1959. He was a staunch supporter of education and insisted that his children acquire a college degree. He talked to many young children about completing high school and not dropping out. He was his grandchildren and great-grandchildren’s hero and they loved and respected him very much.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, James Rafter, Maston Stephen (Jun), and Charles Thomas; sisters, Lavinia Gertrude Pickard and infant sister, Virginia Hill and daughter-in-law, Barbara Hill.
He is survived by his wife, Sarah Marie (Rusty) Hill of the home; daughter, Sue-Ann McCracken and husband Jim and their children, Troy Stephens and wife Elizabeth, Eric Stephens and wife Kyla, Steven Hill and wife Lorraine and son James (JR); Mary Warmuth and husband Jeff and daughter Shayna Sherrell; sisters, Rebecca Mitchell, Josephine Keisler and husband Johnny and Faye Brock and husband Gwenn; great-grandchildren, Layne and Harlee Stephens, Nathan Starr, Cheyenne, Kaylan, and Koltyn Stephens and Jake and Jasmyne Hill; special extended family members, Scott Curry and family and Jody Rogers and family, Steve and Lorraine’s family, Jeff and Mary’s family, Tina Stephens, Lisa Hill and many other relatives and friends.
Funeral services will be 2:00 p.m. Friday, December 7, 2012 at Oktaha United Methodist Church with Rev. Terry Fox officiating. Interment will follow in Oktaha City Cemetery. Pallbearers will be Troy Stephens, James Hill, Eric Stephens, Jerry Needham, Clinton Hill and Scott Curry. Honorary pallbearers are Shayna Sherrell, Dustin Rhodes, Stan Hill, Jeff Rhodes, Jody Rogers, Brad McGuire, Jason Bacon, Basil Rogers and Richard Rhodes.
Funeral service arrangements are under the direction of Foster-Petering Funeral Home. Condolences to the family may be made at www.foster-petering.com