In Memory

Robert L. Blevins

Robert L. Blevins

Robert “Bob” Blevins Jr., retired principal, Woodbridge Lion, founding member Woodbridge church

Robert Lee Blevins, Jr. of Woodbridge, VA, died peacefully on Saturday, May 23, 2020. He was 87 years old. There will be a memorial service to celebrate Bob’s life in the coming months. 

Bob was born in Jenkins, Kentucky, the third child of Robert Lee Blevins, Sr., a coal miner, and Flossie Emily Blevins (nee Heaberlin), a housewife and seamstress. His two older sisters, Loretta Adeline Banks and Nell Marie Conley both preceded him in death.

Bob grew up in Jenkins, a regular boy in a rural, coal-mining town. At a height of 5’9”, he always felt lucky that he was chosen to play on his high school’s basketball team. It would remain his favorite sport. He went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in 1955 from Emory & Henry College in Virginia. He always reflected with great pride and fondness of his time as an E&H Wasp. 

Bob’s first job was as a seventh-grade teacher at Occoquan Elementary school in Woodbridge. In 1957, he moved back to Jenkins to care for his sick father (who died that same year) and then stayed to care for his widowed mother. During the next five years, he taught Government at Jenkins High School until he was offered a job as Director of Pupil Personnel in Pikeville, Kentucky, about an hour away from where he had grown up.

As a young man he was active in the Pikeville City School System, where he taught, coached, and served as a truant officer during his time there. He was often seen driving a school bus to and from games and events around the area. He was known for his love of teaching and making sure that kids prospered.

Bob met his bride, Patricia Jean Blevins (nee Rogers), in Pikeville, and the two were married in 1965. He went on to earn his master’s degree in Education from the University of Kentucky. Anyone who knew Bob, knew of his love of the Wildcats. His favorite thing to do was to see UK play at Rupp Arena. 

In 1967, Bob was called back to Prince William County to open a new elementary school. 

He and Pat moved to Woodbridge, where he opened Belmont Elementary School in 1967. In January of 1968, they were blessed with their only child, Rebecca Lynn. 

He was principal at Belmont until 1979. He transferred to Coles Elementary School in 1980 and remained principal there until he retired in 1995. 

He was the very first recipient of the Stuart M. Beville Award for Outstanding Ethical and Moral Standards in Principalship in the Public Schools of Virginia.

Bob and Pat were one of the first families to put down roots in the Lake Ridge area and have maintained strong ties to the Lake Ridge and Woodbridge communities. 

Bob was a long-standing member of the Woodbridge Lions’ Club for over 25 years. He held numerous positions within the organization, including President twice. 

He was actively involved in their many philanthropic activities, including the eye glass recycle program, and his favorite, checking the eyesight and hearing of the children in Prince William County.

As a Lion he received the highly coveted Melvin Jones Fellowship Award, an international award that recognizes outstanding members for their significant contributions in community service. 

Bob was a member of the Prince William County Retired Teachers Association, an organization which promotes camaraderie among former educators, disseminates information about retirement programs, provides scholarships to deserving students, and engages in other worthwhile civic activities.

He was a founding member of Woodbridge Christian Church, where he and Pat were members since 1968. 

As a member of the church he was an elder for many years. His leadership in the church was an integral part of who he was, and his strong faith carried him throughout his life.

Bob is survived by his wife Patricia, his daughter, Rebecca, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins on both sides of his family. 

He is also remembered by many friends from all over the country, but especially in Virginia and Kentucky.

Bob was beloved by all who met him including teachers, students, parents, and friends. He touched many lives as an educator, a leader in the community, and a man of faith. He will be remembered fondly by those whose lives he touched.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Woodbridge Christian Church, 3182 Golansky Blvd, Ste 101, Woodbridge, VA, 22192.