Robert Fitts


Robert Fitts, 91, of Rock Island, died Thursday, January 20, 2022 at his home.  Funeral services will be 11:30 am Tuesday, January 25, 2022 at the Knox Chapel of Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, 2106 7th Avenue, Rock Island.  Visitation will be from 10 – 11:30 am Tuesday, January 25, 2022 at the Knox Chapel.  Burial will take place at the Rock Island National Cemetery, Arsenal Island, where military honors will be presented.  In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in care of the Church of Peace Food Pantry, Rock Island.

Robert was born on October 11, 1930 in Mt. Vernon, Illinois, a son of Fred and Wilma Fitts.  He graduated from Mt. Vernon High School during which time he also worked steadily at his father’s Mobil Gas Station.

Bob married Mildred Dyel in June of 1950.  Three children were born to this union including Robert Jr., Cheryl Ann and Terry Brian.  While in high school, Bob and some buddies decided to join the National Guard, planning to get paid to attend camps in the summer.  Soon thereafter, camp moved to Korea in the winter.  Bob served as Master Sergeant for the unit keeping the vehicles running during the war.  Upon getting discharged, he attended McKendree College in Lebanon, Illinois and seminary in Naperville, Illinois.  In 1963 he graduated with a Master of Divinity Degree, was ordained and served over 25 United Methodist Churches in Central Illinois.

Bob married Sheila Meidel nee Peterson at the Colony Church in Bishop Hill on September 18, 1981.  They just celebrated their 40th Anniversary.

Bob spent many years recognizing Korean War Vets.  He started a local KWVA Chapter and eventually served two terms as state KWVA Commander.  He was then elected as a director for the National KWVA Board of Directors.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Sheila Fitts, Rock Island; children, Cheryl (Mark) Bradley, Normal, Ill. and Terry Fitts, Bloomington, Ill.; grandchildren, Wesley Kissel, Sam Bradley, Johnathan Fitts and Billy Bray; siblings, Maxine Story, Mt. Vernon, Ill., Geraldine Howard, Mishawaka, Ind. and Charles Fitts, Indianapolis, Ind.; and step-children, Mike (Janice) Meidel, Venice, Fla., Cathy (Ward) Scott, LeClaire, Iowa and Kurt (Debbie) Meidel, St. Albans, Mo.

He was preceded in death his son, Robert Fitts Jr. and brothers, Roy Lee Fitts and Billy Fitts.

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