COTTOM - Robert Vance Cottom, CAPT, USN (RET) joined the church triumphant on September 13, 2009. Robert was born April 6, 1932 in Akron, Ohio, the 4th of 5 sons born to Glenn H. and Edna P Cottom.
The Cottoms moved to Miami, FL in the early 1940ís, where Robert attended Shenandoah Elementary, Shenandoah Jr High and Miami Senior High School. With the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950, Robert joined the U.S Navy, advancing through the ranks until commissioned in 1960 and completed his military service upon retirement in 1983 as Captain. During his career, Robert graduated with a BA from University of Rhode Island in 1992, as well as the Naval War College in Newport, RI. He served on eight ships, commanding two. Ashore he served on the staff of Naval War College, Director of Surface Warfare Basic Course and Assistant Chief of Staff (N-2) of Chief of Naval Education and Training at Pensacola, FL. He and his wife, Alice, retired to Osceola County, Florida in 1983 where Robert taught 8th grade U.S. History at   St. Cloud Middle School for 9 years.
Robert is preceded in death by his parents and four brothers. He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Alice Cottom of St. Cloud and their four daughters: Cathy McClure, St. Cloud, Barbara Swims, Kissimmee, Carolyn White, Greensboro, NC and Alice J Cottom, St. Cloud; 9 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren. Robert was a member and elder of St. Cloud Presbyterian Church and a member of VFW Post 3227, St. Cloud, and American Legion Post 80, St Cloud.

Below is an email from Tom Sego who was a Lt. on the PERRY when Mr. Cottom was on board.

 

To All,
I attended the memorial services held in St Cloud, FL, on 18 Sept.
A terrific eulogy by the pastor, and fitting for a great guy and superb Naval Officer.
Alice, his 4 daughters, and too many grand children to count were present.
His interment was at the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Fl.  Full Military honors!
John Young  and his wife, Norma, were kind enough to send a floral arrangement which represented the Officers and Crew of the USS Newman K. Perry (DD-883).  See foto attached.
Our former shipmate apparently went on after his Naval Career to become a very important part of the St Cloud community, teaching school for many years locally.
 
Alice indicated that the many Phone calls he received just prior to his demise were extremely important to him, relishing the fact that so many folks would take the time to remember him in his last hours.
For all of you, it is my opinion that such calls might well be important to any of us in the same situation.  A good lesson.
Tom 

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