August 26, 1944 – December 17, 2015
John Clifton Roberson passed away at home on December 17, 2015 after a brief battle with cancer. John was the eldest son of Frances Mann and Herman Roberson, Sr. He is survived by one brother Robbie Roberson and his wife Pat; two nieces, Kacey Baxter and Kelli Degnan; and one aunt, Lyla McMullen. John is also survived by numerous cousins.
John was born in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on August 26, 1944. Because his father was in the military, John attended schools in Pensacola, Florida; St. Simons Island, Georgia; Toms River, New Jersey; and North Kingstown, RI. He graduated from high school in 1962 in Annapolis, Maryland. John was the first person in Annapolis High School history to score a perfect score of 800 on the math section of the SAT.
From 1962 through 1965 John attended the University of Alabama where he majored in aerospace engineering. His education was interrupted by the Vietnam War. In 1965 John served in the U.S. Marine Corps for five years. He was in Vietnam for 13 months where he flew Sikorski H-34 helicopters and had over 1600 accident free carrier landings. He fought in the Battle of Khe Sanh, where he flew numerous medivac missions. His home base was Quang Tri near the DMZ. Having flown over 721 missions in thirteen months in Vietnam, John was awarded The Distinguished Flying Cross.
When John returned to the states, he continued his education and earned both a B.A. and a M.A. from the University of Alabama. He taught history at Georgia Southern and at Lander University (SC). Then in 1991 John earned a PhD in History from the University of South Carolina. Later, he opened the Charleston Carriage Company. Because of his rich background in the history of Charleston, John’s customers were in for a special treat when they rode in his carriage. Eventually, John moved back to New Hope, Alabama , where he sold books and antiques.
John was a long standing member of the New Hope Methodist Church. Because of his love of history, John was thought of as the family historian and photographer for the Mann family. He loved showing old movies of family parties and took literally thousands of photos at weddings and parties.
Visitation will be from 12 to 1 on Saturday, December 19 at New Hope Funeral Hope. The funeral will follow with Brother Mike Carpenter and Clifton Mann officiating. Donations may be made to the New Hope Methodist Church Building Fund.