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Beloved by all who know him, Robert Reed Eddington has returned home to the Lord he has served so devotedly in mortality. He passed away peacefully in Provo, Utah, September 9, 2019, surrounded by his loving family.
He was 85.
Robert was born on July 11, 1934 in Beaver, Utah, to Reed and Elnora Eddington. He grew up in Murray, Utah. Upon graduating from high school, he joined the United States Air Force as a pilot. In 1955, he married his sweetheart and eternal companion, Margret Jane Shepherd, in the Mesa Arizona Temple.
A lifetime of adventure and service followed.
Robert and Jane traveled the world and lived wherever duty called them: Bermuda, North Dakota, Spain, Arkansas, and Utah. He flew KC-97 and KC-135 air-refuelers for much of his military career, and later C-123s while flying air reconnaissance in Vietnam. He was a decorated officer whose devotion to his country was in keeping with the finest traditions of military service.
While serving his country, Robert never took liberty from serving his Heavenly Father. He served as an LDS bishop and as a branch president, presiding over efforts to build or expand chapels in Minot, North Dakota, and Jacksonville, Arkansas.
As a branch president stationed at Torrejon Air Force Base, he and others helped pave the way for Spain to extend formal recognition to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Later, in civilian life, he served in bishoprics, on stake high councils, as a high priest group leader, and in many other callings.
Robert received his Bachelor of Science in accounting from Brigham Young University in 1979, and became the director of the Utah County chapter of the American Red Cross. In 1984, Robert and Jane served an LDS mission in Apia, Western Samoa. He later worked as an auditor for the Office of Inspector General in Atlanta, Georgia, before retiring and returning to Utah, where he then served on the Cedar Hills City Council.
Wherever or in whatever capacity he served, Robert was the epitome of the good Samaritan, someone who could always be relied on to lend a helping hand or offer an encouraging word to those in need. He also donated generously to the less-fortunate, often at considerable expense and personal sacrifice.
Equally noteworthy were his beautiful tenor voice, yodeling and ukulele playing. He loved singing barbershop and performing, on occasion, in a country and western band. He even cut a CD of him playing some of his favorite songs.
In addition to music, he enjoyed snorkeling, sailing, water-skiing, and flying. After he retired, he renewed his pilot’s license so he could take his grandchildren on short flights and share with them his love of aviation.
Above all, more than his career or recreational pursuits, Robert treasured his relationship with his wife, his family and his Heavenly Father.
He was a faithful member of the LDS Church who had an unshakable testimony and an unwavering moral compass. The righteous example he set, the service he rendered and the love he gave are a legacy that his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will ever remember and always cherish.
Robert is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Margret Jane Eddington, and his children: Michael R. Eddington (Shelly), Mark A. Eddington (Patti), Leslie M. Tanner (Wayne), and Rachel J. Williams (James), and by 21 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held Friday, September 20, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. in the Manila Creek 5th Ward Chapel, 3785 West Box Elder Drive, Cedar Hills with a viewing from 9:00 – 10:45 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be at Elysian Burial Gardens, Millcreek, Utah.
The family would like to thank Hospice and the staff at Legacy for their compassionate care and support.