Robert L. "Bobby" Souther
By: Tom Norvell

Vol. 7 No. 09 March 1, 2004

Robert L. “Bobby” Souther

He was a Christian for as long as he could remember, a husband for over fifty-seven years, a father of three wonderful children, a grandfather, a brother, a devoted son, and genuine friend to more people than anyone will ever know. He was a very successful businessman, he was a man of wisdom, respected and admired by all who knew him. He given name was Robert L. Souther, but to all we all called him Bobby. He will be missed.

Last week multitalented, loved by many, man of God left this earth, the confines of his seventy-seven year old body, “crossed the bar” to see his “Pilot face to face.” Bobby became a daily part of our family’s conversation when I began preaching in Brunswick, Georgia in 1986. Bobby and Myrleen became our friends, our parents, our children’s grandparents, and our constant encouragers. He will be greatly missed.

When I think of Bobby there are three words that come to mind: love, family, and servant.

Bobby was a man of love. Bobby loved people. People he worked with. People at church. People at the club. People he had known all his life. He loved his wife, his children, his grandchildren, and his children’s friends. He loved people and people loved him. He loved unconditionally.

Bobby was a family man. There is no better of example of the love we saw in Bobby than the way he loved this family. From the grandchildren to his own mother. Especially in the way he loved Myrleen…in sickness and in health…till death do us part.” He loved. He loved us. As Myrleen has told me hundreds of times, “Don’t you ever forget that!” I haven’t. I won’t. We haven’t. We won’t.

Bobby was a servant. He served people on a daily basis. He served his nation for many years as a leader in the Georgia National Guard. His businesses were service-oriented businesses. He has forever been placed in our hearts with memories of things he did and things he said that remind us of his servant-nature.

As we go through this life we are fortunate if we can say we have known few great men. We may have occasion to meet a few famous people, a few really wealthy people, and maybe a few great people by the world’s standards. In my life I have been very fortunate in that I have known a few great men, by God’s standards (Mark 10:33-37). Bobby is one of those men.

One of the interesting things about being in the presence of trueness greatness is that their greatness inspires us and challenges us to be better people. That’s the case with Bobby. By knowing him and being able to observe how he did business, how he treated strangers, how he treated people the he didn’t particularly care for, and how he treated his family, we all have been challenged and inspired to do those things better, to be more Bobby-like. And by doing that knowing we would also be more Christ-like.

We have no control of how or where we come into this world. We move along on our journey as God directs our paths. He blesses us with people who enter our world at the time we need them the most, at the time we cannot imagine living without them. All who knew him have all been blessed to have Bobby Souther in our lives…at just the right time, when we needed his words, his voice, his laughter, his tenderness, his advice, his help, his strength, his wisdom, his example, and his love. I will forever be thankful to God for making it possible for Bobby to be a part of my life. I will miss him.


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A Norvell Note: