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Terry L. McRoberts

December 12, 2012

 

Terry L. McRoberts

1937-2012

 

A graveside service will be held at the Mt Whitney District Cemetery in Lone Pine on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 10 a.m. for Terry Lane McRoberts, who passed away peacefully in his sleep Friday, Nov. 30, 2012 at his residence in Yreka, Calif. Terry was 75.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 1 p.m. at the Lone Pine Community Center (Old Schat’s Bakery) on Main Street. Friends and family are invited to attend the service.

Terry was born on Feb. 3, 1937 in Mojave, the second of three children born to Bailey and Doris (Bright) McRoberts-Ferber. Terry lived in Big Pine with his elder brother, Bailey T., then moved Tracy, Calif. where his brother Travis was born, followed by Independence, where he started elementary school. His family then moved to Burton’s Camp near Rosemond, where they lived in a boxcar while his father worked in mining. 

Terry spent much of his childhood learning the trade of mining. He took an interest in joining the military at an early age which led to what would become a career. From his early childhood he was inspired by his uncles, father and grandfather, T.L. Bright, in mining which later became a passion that Terry had until his passing.

After World War II, Terry’s mother Doris married Harvey Ferber and moved to Los Angeles where Terry attended middle school. His family lived there a short time until Harvey purchased a ranch near Yreka, where Terry started eighth grade at Willow Creek and attended high school in Yreka. While a teenager, he learned to hunt and fish and became an avid outdoorsman. 

Terry met and married Gloria Girdner and they had their only child together, Tara. In 1954 he joined the National Guard, 49th Infantry Division. Soon after, he joined the Navy in January of 1956 and was a Seabee for three years. He then moved to Bishop and spent a year living with his uncle, Don Bright, where he worked at the Union Carbide mine. He continued his military career by joining the Army in 1961.

Terry started his Army career by going to basic training in Fort Ord, Calif. After basic training he was sent to Medical Corpsman training at Ft. Sam Houston near San Antonio, Texas. While attending school, he met and married fellow classmate Elaine M. McCoy. He was soon after transferred to Ft. Bragg, N.C. and was assigned to the 82nd Airborne. 

While in North Carolina, he and Elaine had three children, Terry J., Troy and Torrie before being recruited in the Special Forces in 1965. They had their fourth child, Tyreen, in Yreka while Terry went to Linguistics School in Monterey, Calif. After completing school, he and Elaine moved to Panama where they had their fifth child, Thatcher. Terry was assigned to the 8th Special Forces Group while stationed there. Soon after, he went to Vietnam where he was with the 173rd Airborne Brigade. After returning from the Vietnam War, the family returned to Ft. Sam Houston, Texas and had their sixth child, Terra.

Terry was then assigned to the 8th Infantry Division in Germany for three years, then finally spent the remainder of his military career at Ft. Baker and the Letterman Army Hospital in San Francisco as the acting Command Sgt. Major. He retired from the Army in 1977 with 24 years, one month and 15 days of total service.

From 1977 to 1991, Terry moved back to the Owens Valley, the place he loved during his childhood, and lived in Olancha with his partner, Heidi Overman, while working for Big Pine Distributors, a clay mill in Olancha. He spent the last 20 years living with his life partner, Linda E., next to Copco Lake and in Yreka. During those years, he and Linda, along with visiting family members, were almost always seen fishing either at the Iron Gate reservoir, Copco Lake or somewhere along the Klamath River. He was very proud and spoke freely about his accomplishments while serving and defending our country in the military. He instilled morals, integrity and respect in his children which has created a loving bond within his family. Along with the military, Terry had other passions in his life, including hunting for arrowheads and old bottles, fishing, painting and working with his hands. He was very proud of his family and was dearly loved by his family, children and grandchildren.

Terry was preceded in death by his brother, Bailey T. McRoberts; wife, Thelma L.; sister, Chereen Ferber; his parents, Bailey McRoberts and Doris Ferber; son-in-law, Paul Leonard Fath; and granddaughter, Chaya.

He is survived by his aunt, June Bagwell of Lone Pine; brother, Travis Dale McRoberts and wife Julie of Scott Valley, Calif.; sons, Terry Jay McRoberts and wife Tammy of Medford, Ore., Troy Lane McRoberts of Bakersfield, and Thatcher Lee Bright McRoberts and wife Cheryl of Bakersfield; daughters, Tara Ann English and husband Robert of Mt. Shasta, Torrie Lynne Eeles and husband Bryan of LaVerkin, Utah, Tyreen Lee Fath of Lone Pine, and Terra Louise Eutsler and husband Rick of Bakersfield; nephews, Bailey McRoberts, David McRoberts, Daniel McRoberts and Carrick McRoberts; niece, Melanie Siqueiros; 19 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to The Wounded Warriors Project, https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org

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