Rev. Robert Lee Sutton was born in Chicago, Illinois on November 21, 1936, to the union of John Benjamin, Sr and Roberta Cade Sutton, both of whom preceded him in death. He attended Chicago Public Schools and graduated from Wendell Phillips High School in 1955., where he was an avid musician, playing the trumpet and trombone, often preferring band to all other classes, even sometimes skipping those other classes to return to band class.
After graduation, Robert married Anna Louise Hawkins. To that union was born Robert Louise. Robert then joined the United States Air Force and served as a Technical Sergeant from 1955 to 1958.\, where upon, he was honorably discharged.
In 1960 he married Gwendolyn Smith. To this union was born Stephan Laroy.
During his life, Robert, worked in a variety of capacities from delivering milk for the Bowman Dairy Company, to working for the Internal Revenue Service, to working for the Chicago Public Schools, serving as an electrical judge, Boy Scout Troop Leader and even owning his own business to include a security firm, insurance and financial planning agency, and a gas station. He loved to bowl and was a member of as many as three leagues at a time. Through it all, he continued his love for music as a member of many bands, including the United States Post Office Band and the Boy Scouts Band.
In 1968, he met and married Freddie Mae. To this union was born Fredi Nichelle. During their time together, they were also blessed with children David (who preceded him in death), Vynessa Denise, Joseph Michael, Janaria Joann, Ronaldo Scott, and Makisha Desiree. On February 3, 2018, Robert and Freddie celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.
Robert was a member of Blackwell Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church, where his mother Roberta was also an esteemed and faithful member, church treasurer and prestigious Minister of Music. Like Mother, like Son. In 1994, he accepted his calling to ministry and, as an Exhorter, presented his trial sermon. He was accepted as a candidate and finally, on April 27, 1996, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, Rev. Leonard Marcus Cade, Robert was officially ordained as a Minister of the A.M.E. Zion church. During his years of service to the church as Associate Pastor, Robert was a member of the trustee board and the choir. He also transported congregants, taught Sunday School and served communion to the sick and shut in. He graduated from Interdenominational Theological Center of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. He also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Inner City Studies from Northeastern Illinois, University, In Chicago, Illinois, graduating Suma Cum Laude.
In 2008, he retired from ministry to focus on his health and his role as family patriarch. Even during challenging diagnoses, many ER visits and hospital stays, his faith and passion as a follower of Christ never wavered. He was always a strong, friendly and fatherly spirit, even from his hospital bed. And still, his love of music followed him. He even had the nurses singing along with Miles Davis tunes in the hospital recovery room.
On Tuesday, October 9, 2018, this warrior was called home from battle. At the young age of 81, Robert made his transition to incorruptible life. Awaiting him with open arms, he finally reunites with his parents, Mother Dear and Daddy John, his brothers John Benjamin, Jr., (Sonny) and William Marcus (Billy) and, most importantly, He who Robert accepted as his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He leaves to cherish his memory, his wife Freddie, Sister Patricia Anne Johnson, his children, 14 Grandchildren , 8 great-grandchildren and a host of nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, cousins and friends.
Chicago, IL 60649
Chicago, IL 60649
Elwood, IL 60421