OBITUARY

Dr. Robert Holden Stafford

April 11, 1943November 13, 2021
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COLUMBIA - Dr. Robert Holden Stafford, 78, passed away Saturday, November 13, 2021 after a courageous battle with Pulmonary Fibrosis and Chronic Atrial Fibrillation. He was affectionately known as “Dr. Bob,” “Bob,” “Bobby,” or “Doci”.

Born in San Antonio, Texas, he was the son of the late Luther Hankinson and Katherine Ochse Stafford. His formative years were spent in Columbia, S.C. He was a 1961 graduate of Dreher High School, where he was an Honor Roll Student and President of the Student Body. Bob graduated from The Citadel in 1965, obtaining a Bachelor’s Degree in pre-med. He met his first wife, Ann Montgomery Stafford, while attending The Citadel. He was a member of The Citadel Golf Team, which won the SEC Championship in 1964. He enjoyed sharing the word that this win was the first SEC Championship won by The Citadel. A banner flies high in The Citadel McAlister Field House in recognition of the honor.

Bob attended the Medical University of South Carolina, graduating in 1969. He chose to pursue the specialty of Obstetrics and Gynecology and began that specialty practice as a member of the U.S. Army, serving at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. He excelled as an Obstetrics/ Gynecology resident physician caring for high-risk patients.

Bob returned to S.C. in 1973 as Chief of Obstetrics/Gynecology at Moncrief Army Hospital, Fort Jackson, S.C. After many years of private practice in Columbia and Charleston, Bob met his second wife, Sarah Heaton Stafford, at the WJBD Dorn VA Hospital in Columbia. He became aware of the increasing numbers of pregnant females with substance abuse challenges. This interest led to subsequent study and Board Certification in Addiction Medicine and a change in his area of practice. He practiced Addiction Medicine as Medical Director of CHAPs, Baker Treatment Center, LRADAC, Columbia, S.C., and retired as Director of Tri-County Alcohol/Drug Abuse Center, Orangeburg, S.C. He was proud of the successful efforts that led to births of healthy babies to mothers affected with substance abuse. Bob was an active member of the Spirit of Fellowship Sunday School class, Trenholm Road United Methodist Church. He was a member of Forest Lake Club and a former member of Charleston Country Club. He was an avid golfer and enjoyed many hours of golf at each club. In 2004, Bob attended the USC School of Culinary Arts and became certified as a chef. He enjoyed cooking, developing his personal recipes, and became known for his delicious banana bread.

Bob is survived by his wife, Sarah Heaton Stafford; daughter, Ashley Stafford Williams (Chuck) of Columbia; sons, Robert Stafford Jr. (Casey) of Charleston, Montgomery Stafford (Meredith) of Charleston, stepdaughter, Amanda Heaton LeVeck (Kelly) of Columbia; stepson, David Neal Heaton (Mary Margaret) of Atlanta, GA; ten grandchildren, and one great-grandson. He is also survived by his sisters, Susie Stafford and Patty Brantley (Tom). He was predeceased by his first wife, Ann Montgomery Stafford and his sister, Kathy Stafford Phillips (Tom).

A memorial service for Dr. Stafford will be held at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, November 21, 2021 at Dunbar Funeral Home, Devine Street Chapel, with visitation one hour prior to the service.

Memorials may be made to Trenholm Road UMC, 3401 Trenholm Road, Columbia, S.C. 29204, The Citadel Foundation, 171 Moultrie Street, Charleston, S.C. 29409 or Tri-County Alcohol/Drug Commission, 910 Cook Road, Orangeburg, S.C. 29118.

Memories may be shared at www.dunbarfunerals.com.

Services

  • Visitation

    Sunday, November 21, 2021

  • Memorial Service

    Sunday, November 21, 2021

Memories

Dr. Robert Holden Stafford

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Rachel Cochran

November 25, 2021

Thinking of the Stafford family today and giving my condolences on the passing of my cousin Bobby. He had a way of lighting up the room and just a decent, super nice person. I'm grateful for the time I shared with Bobby at a recent family celebration in Augusta. I know his family is missing him this Thanksgiving Day.
Sincerely,
Rachel Stafford Cochran
Decatur, GA

Mike Dennis

November 20, 2021

Dr, Bob was a wonderful man who loved people. There are countless numbers of people and families he helped through his work in the addiction field. I’m proud to have known him, worked with him and consider him a friend. Our loss is Heaven’s gain. To all of his family, I hope you find some comfort knowing he is whole now and rejoicing with the Lord.

Robert Turbyfill

November 20, 2021

My deepest sympathy to all of Bob's family and friends. I will always be grateful to him for the care and concern he exhibited when he treated my late wife Ann (his 1st cousin). She had collapsed with heat prostration while attending an ecumenical service conducted by Pope John Paul at the University of South Carolina's Williams-Brice Stadium on September 12, 1987. Ann was taken to the medical tent and much to our surprise Bob was on duty there and treated her. He was her Angel that day.

Herb Wise

November 19, 2021

Bob-I remember like yesterday our times at Dreher and then in "O" company together at The Citadel, both of us majoring in Pre Med, sweating through chemistry, anatomy and physics courses and labs while our classmates in Education, Business and Political Science were back in the Barracks playing Bridge -or whatever. LOL! I will always remember the good times we had in those early years. God bless your family and Rest In Peace My Friend.

Herb

Sandy Werts

November 16, 2021

He was the kindest and most caring man I have ever had the pleasure of knowing

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