“..And His LORD said to him, well done MY good and faithful servant. You have
been faithful over a few things, I will set you over many things…”
Robert Edward Chester, a true servant of THE LORD, slipped into eternity on September 2, 2020. A generous man, he had a love for life, for all people and for the community. Robert had a great sense of humor and governance of respect for all who knew him. He will live forever in our hearts.
The son of the late Willie J. Chester and Mary Bailey Chester was born May 20, 1945, in Blakely, Early County, Georgia, in the Sandy Bottom Community. Robert accepted THE LORD and was baptized at Bright Star Missionary Baptist Church at an early age.
After graduating from Washington High School in 1963, he attended Monroe Area Vocational School (now Albany Technical College) in Albany, Georgia. He was drafted into the military in 1965, serving two years in the US Army before being honorably discharged. In 1968, he began working for the US Department of Defense (DOD) as a civil service engineer. In his 32-year career with the federal government, he held many prominent positions before retiring in 2000. Robert and Shirley, his beloved wife of 54 years, lived in Fairfax, Virginia, before moving their family to Newport News, Virginia, where they raised their two children, DeWayne and Karen.
Once retired, Robert and Shirley decided to return to their Georgian roots and settled in Blakely, building their dream home and becoming a part of the community. A man who loved mentoring, Robert spent his life engaging young people and helping them along their own professional journey. Realizing how blessed his life had been, he was determined and dedicated to giving back. He volunteered on various boards that helped Early County, well as the Southwest Georgia community. Robert had a great love for Albany Technical College and served on the Board of Directors for many years, additionally he served as a State Coordinator for the Association of Community College Trustees. In the truest sense of a community servant, Robert served as a Board Member on the Early County Chamber of Commerce, the Hospital Authority of Early County and Southwest GA Community Action Council and as President of Washington High School Alumni. With all of his civic engagement, his benevolence was most extended, however, to his family, where he served as President and CEO of the Chester Family Corporation. Under this corporation, Robert developed a foundation that will serve as a legacy for generations to follow. The Chester family name will forever live in the Early County records because of his foresight and commitment.
Gone from this earth, but never from our hearts, he has claimed his reward. Greeting him in Heaven are his parents and three of his brothers: Willie Jay Jr., Emmitt and Eugene Chester.
Robert will forever be lovingly remembered by his wife, Shirley; son, DeWayne (Priscilla) of Durham, NC; daughter, Karen Welch (John David), grandsons: Gabriel David and John Israel of Sanford, NC; his remaining siblings: Albert Chester of Miami FL, James Chester (Barbara) of Cocoa, FL, and Mary Pickett (Reginald) of Woodbridge, VA; along with a host of brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, cousins and friends and a community who loved him dearly.
A LIFE WELL LIVED; HIS CALL HAS BEEN FULFILLED.
In lieu of flowers, please make donation to the 1963 Washington High School Alumni in Blakely, Georgia.
To send flowers to Robert's family, please visit our floral store.