Billy Roberts


Mr. Billy Wayne Roberts, 91, of New Church, husband of Frances Marie Roberts, passed away on Jan. 4, 2024, in Onancock.

Born on May 19, 1932, in Quinlan, Texas, he was the son of the late John M. Roberts and the late Lillie Jewell White. Bill was a proud member of the National Guard and later a staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force.

During his time in the National Guard, he was in the 146th Medium Tank Battalion Combat Command B 49th Armored Division. He served during the Korean War and earned a National Defense Service Medal.

He worked as an electrical engineer for LTV/Chance Vought and Lockheed Martin and was involved in the stealth program ­— Project 917, as well as the installation of the Scout Missile in the Smithsonian Institute. He also worked on a Desert Storm project after retirement.

He was a past member of Parksley and Atlantic fire departments. Bill could make anything and loved tinkering and fixing things. Bill was a lifetime member of the NRA, and he enjoyed hunting, guns, and traveling with his wife and friends to Pennsylvania to go to the flea markets.

Other than his beloved wife, Fran, Bill is survived by three daughters, Deborah Ann Gilmore (James Harrison), of Loganville, Ga., Karen Elizabeth Tapman (Billy), of New Church, and Janet Darlene Trader (E.T.), of New Church; grandchildren, Mandy Gilmore, Billy Tapman (Dana), Matthew Tapman (Hillary), Tom Trader, Brian Trader (Tyler), Jennifer Bennett (Colin), and Jonathan Flowers (Chelsea); great-grandchildren, Alvis, Brody, Taty, Leila, Miguel, TJ, Kylie, Alanna, Noah, Gabriel, Brinley, London, and one on the way; several great-great-grandchildren; sisters, Katie and Ollie; and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be private.

Should friends desire, memorial contributions may be made to Riverside Shore Hospice, 23379 Commerce Drive, Accomac, VA 23301.

Arrangements are by the Thornton Funeral Home in Parksley.

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