Robert Joseph Erkert, 74, of Bokeelia died peacefully Aug. 10, 2011, at Hope Hospice House in Cape Coral with his beloved wife, Susan, at his side. He was born May 7, 1937, in Philadelphia, and is survived by a large extended family of children, stepchildren, foster children, grandchildren, sisters, brother and a host of nieces, nephews, and loved ones.
His daughters, Barbara (Edward) Reynolds, Elizabeth (Thomas) Chedester, and Amy McGuire; and grandchildren, Kyle and Kristen Reynolds and Christopher, Robert, Stephen and Andrew Chedester are joined by Kelley Logsdon (Troy) and Narcissus Magturo as being the children and grandchildren of his body and heart.
He was a graduate of the University of Maryland, and was employed chiefly in design engineering for missile systems for naval vessels. His second career included real estate sales, investments and settlements. He served the U.S. Navy proudly, four years active duty, and 29 years as a Naval Reservist, achieving the rank of E9, Master Chief Petty Officer. He remained active in the Naval Reserve Association his entire life, and counted his military service as one of his greatest sources of pride and accomplishment. His final resting place will be Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C.
He possessed a generous and charitable heart. One of his greatest interests was Habitat for Humanity and he built houses with them in New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Maryland and Bokeelia. He worked with the Lutheran Disaster Relief groups after Hurricane Katrina in Biloxi, Miss., and Hurricane Floyd in Virginia, employing his electrical and carpenter skills in rebuilding homes destroyed by natural disasters. His volunteer spirit extended to his church, community and neighbors as he served with the Pine Island Free Lunch for Kids program, the food bank collection team and with the Pine Island Beacon of Hope.
Memorial services were held at St. Luke's Lutheran Church, 17740 Muncaster Road, Derwood, MD, on Saturday, Aug. 27, at 11 a.m., followed by internment and a reception at the family home.
Donations may be made to St. Luke's Memorial Fund, PO Box 5504, Derwood MD 20855 where a stained glass memorial will be given in his memory.
Online condolences may be made at www.horizonfuneralhomes.com