Rev. Robert “Bob” Melton of Chillicothe, Ohio passed away peacefully on November 18, 2022. Pastor Bob served American Baptist Churches in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kansas and West Virginia. He retired in 2001 after serving at Tabernacle Baptist in Chillicothe.
Bob was born on May 17, 1936, to Robert A. “Skid” and Demma C. Melton. He grew up in St. Albans, WV, graduated from St. Albans High School, and went on to Morris-Harvey College to major in Music Theory. There, in choir, he met Rayma Kay Ramsey, daughter of George E. and Erma D. Ramsey from Belle, West Virginia who would be his companion, partner in ministry and best friend for the rest of their lives. After graduation in 1958 Bob and Kay married and headed off to prepare for Christian pastoral work at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, where Bob completed a Masters in Christian Education.
Over the next decades they would serve together in pastoral ministry. The Melton’s finished their full-time vocational ministry in service at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Chillicothe, Ohio where they remained after retirement in 2001, continuing in volunteer church work for many years at Freedom House and Chillicothe First Assembly.
During his long career “Reverend Bob”/ “Pastor Bob” would use his diverse gifts to serve in the offices of: Youth Minister, Minister of Christian Education, Music Minister and Lead Pastor. Through the years Bob was instrumental in writing Christian Education curriculum for Youth Ministry, vocal arrangements for choral music, and was influential in saving a small Methodist Church in the hills of West Virginia.
Bob was known for his love and acceptance of people in every walk of life, being generous in whatever he could give; time, a couch to sleep on, a warm room to sleep in, or finances. He was popular as a youth pastor (a kid at heart) and choir director and directed many musicals. He was greatly loved and admired by those he ministered to both young and old. In extra hours he was sought out for professional counseling services and crisis ministry. Bob was an artist by hobby and created beautiful pen and ink drawings loved and collected by many. Bob became known on both sides of the family as their pastor in time of need whether it was a funeral, wedding, or a shoulder to cry on. He cherished his family dearly, adored his girls and wife, considered their husbands as sons, and was considered a special Uncle to Laura, Sarah, and Anna who were very special nieces to him.
Along the way, Bob and Kay became the proud parents of Becky, Lynn, and Barbara and together they’ve enjoyed the blessing of three grandchildren.
Becky Melton resides in Chillicothe with her son Nathaniel; Lynn Vennefron and her husband Arlan are in McKinney, Texas with their daughter Ainsley; Barbara Smith and her husband Tim are in Plain City, Ohio with their son Isaac. The grandkids Nathaniel, Isaac, and Ainsley will always remember “Poppa” “Pawpaw” “Papaw”, as a Mountaineer, Browns and Reds fan, a ready laugh, a giver of gifts, and follower and friend of Jesus.
Please keep the Melton family in your prayers.