site image
US Air Force


Robert Charles Berry

April 4, 1930 ~ January 16, 2019 (age 88)

Robert Charles Berry was born on April 4, 1930, to his parents, Homer McCrea

and Eva Sophronia Lanning Berry. Robert grew up in Albia, Iowa on the

family farm with his siblings John, Stan, and Florence and his first cousins,

Patricia and Kathryn.


Robert attended Reitzel Elementary School and graduated from Albia High

School in 1948. He juggled farm chores in the morning, lettered in football

and track all four years and was both homecoming and Valentine King.


Robert continued to excel at the University of Iowa, as a member of Phi Kappa

Psi fraternity and ROTC. After graduation, he was commissioned a 2nd LT in

the USAF and married his college sweetheart, Jeanine Walsh. The two had four

children: Kevin, Anne, Mark and Julie.


Robert’s prestigious US Air Force career began at Lackland AFB’s

Communication School and a deployment to Korea. Returning from Korea, he

was assigned to Scott and Carswell Air Force Bases, where he flew missions on

the B-36, B-52 and later, refueling missions on the KC135s.


Over the next few years, Robert trained pilots and crewmembers in the

Strategic Air Command and was subsequently assigned to the Air Command

and Staff College. Robert received many awards during his career, including

the Distinguished Flying Cross while serving during the Vietnam era.


In 1976 Robert married Virginia (Ginny) Simmons and after his retirement,

they moved to Taiwan to establish a business. They returned stateside when

Ginny became ill and she passed shortly after their return.


In 1985 Robert met Kathy Catlin. They fell in love immediately and were

married the following year. Not only did Robert get an adventurous soul mate in

Kathy, but also the love of her four children: Scott, Candy, Judy and Leslie. It

was a win/win for everyone.


Robert and Kathy spent their summers in Laguna Beach, Canaan Valley, WV

and Maggie Valley, NC. Both were avid golfers, self-proclaimed chefs, happy

hour and dinner party hosts. They enjoyed many adventures abroad to Israel,

Canada and Europe.


Robert was an active member of St. Simon’s Episcopal Church; volunteering his time

and serving on many committees. He was also a member of the Brotherhood of St.



Robert took great pride in being a grandfather and great-grandfather and all

15 loved him dearly.


Robert loved the caring staff at Belvedere Commons and Kim, his loyal

personal assistant. They gave him joy, laughter and loved him with

their whole heart.


Robert is preceded in death by his wife, Kathy Catlin Berry and survived by his

brothers, sister, children, cousins and grandchildren.


A service to celebrate Robert’s life will be held at St Simon’s Episcopal Church,

Fort Walton Beach, on Feb 2, 2019 at 3pm. A reception will follow in the

parish hall.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to “Hunting with Soldiers”, an

organization which was dear to Robert’s heart. His son, Scott Catlin, a former

Vietnam vet, is actively involved in this organization and shares his family’s

ranch with the participants. “Hunting with Soldiers” was created in 2007 with

the purpose of providing an outdoor hunting experience for veterans. Their

mission is to heal the wounds from PTSD and reduce veteran suicides, which

are a staggering 22 per day.


Hunting with Soldiers is a 501(C) 3, and tax deductable. Donations may be

made at or a check payable to “Hunting with

Soldiers” in memory of Robert Berry and may be sent to the address below.


Hunting with Soldiers

c/o Scott Catlin

Box 55

Henrietta, Texas 76365

© 2019 Emerald Coast Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service