Robert Sebastian
Robert Sebastian

Robert Sebastian

AFRH-G Resident Highlight - Robert “Bob” Sebastian

By Lori Kerns | Librarian

Robert “Bob” Sebastian was born in Breathitt, County, Kentucky, then moved to Newport, Kentucky. Around fourth grade he moved, along with his eleven siblings, to Alexandria, Kentucky. When Bob was a junior in high school, he worked at a bowling alley setting pins earning ten cents a game. He realized there were not many job opportunities in Alexandria so he made the decision to leave high school and join the Navy.

At age seventeen, Bob left for boot camp at Great Lakes, Illinois. His first duty station after boot camp was aboard the USS Long Beach for two years. He then went back to Great Lakes to begin guided missile launching school. After his training, he was sent to work aboard the USS Cochrane.

With the Navy, Bob served two tours of duty in the Vietnam War from 1965-66. He returned to the States staying in the guided missile field also teaching A and B schools back at Great Lakes. Bob dedicated 20 years of service to the Navy before retiring and beginning a civilian career.

Back when Bob was twelve years old, he met his childhood sweetheart, Donna Sue. The young couple went on to marry in 1963 and have two children, Robert James and Catherine Addie. During Bob’s Navy career, he tried to stay stationed in Minnesota so the couple could raise the children in that area. They remained in Minnesota after his retirement while he took jobs in the industries of guided missile launching systems, the diecast industry, and the corrugated industry. Once their children grew up and had families of their own (Bob has two grandsons, two granddaughters, and one great grandson), the retired couple decided to RV around the country.

They operated out of Naples, Florida where each January they would sit down with their son to plan out their road trips that would begin each April. Their trips would last until they returned back to Florida in November. On several of their road trips, the journey would take them down Hwy 90 on the Mississippi Gulf Coast passing by AFRH-G. Donna Sue would joke and tell Bob that if he was not a good boy, she would put him out right at the home to live. The kids would join in on the joke each time they passed on a trip.

Bob lost his Donna Sue on Christmas day in 2016. His son brought up the retirement home they loved to joke about to see if it was somewhere he would be interested in living. They checked out AFRH-G online and printed out the paperwork. Bob moved to the Gulfport campus in early 2018.

He has remained extremely busy and involved in many activities in the Home. Among his many hobbies are doing puzzles, collecting coins and currency, reading, and working to set up an amazing train display for the healthcare residents to enjoy. Most recently, due to COVID restrictions, Bob has turned to photography, especially high-speed photography, to help him through difficult times. He is enjoying taking photos of water drops colliding.  He has decided to live a more simple life and focus on his new interest.