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06/17/11 - NNHS Newsletter - Bobby Brinkley

Vernon Robert Brinkley
(09 July 1936 - 13 June 2011)

Newport News High School Class of 1955

Dear Friends and Schoolmates,

   We have another sad edition of the NNHS Newsletter today.
     Bobby Brinkley, Class of 1955, passed away in Newport News on Monday, June 13, 2011, at the age of 74.

  From Jack Nelson ('54) of Northern VA - 06/18/11 - "Vernon Robert Brinkley, 74, died June 13, 2011":

Vernon Robert Brinkley, 74, died June 13, 2011

For all of you who knew Bobby Brinkley - he lived in East End in the 1400 block of 24th Street right next to Salter's Creek - you can go here to read his obituary.  I am sure Ned Parrish knew him.  He graduated in the NNHS class of 1955.
Bobby and I were great friends in our youth and we played in the marshes around his house during the summer for many hours each day.
For those of you who may recall (it was a long time ago) one of Bobby's sons (Howell Keith Brinkley) died in a freak accident when he was very young.  He inadvertently hit the automatic "UP" control on the back window of his dad's station wagon (I believe it was) with his head out the window.  The window came up and choked Bobby's son to death before he was found.  A very tragic accident that left Bobby in mourning for many years.  Some say Bobby was never the same easy going person he was before that accident.
Rest in eternal peace, my friend.

   What a tragic story!  Thank you so much for sharing this, Jack.  You have my deepest sympathies on the loss of your friend.

From the Daily Press - 06/17/11:

              Vernon Robert Brinkley



NEWPORT NEWS - Vernon Robert Brinkley, 74, died June 13, 2011. He was a resident of Newport News for most of his life and was a lifelong member of Orcutt Baptist Church.

He was born July 9, 1936, to Vernon and Frances Brinkley. He graduated from Newport News High School in 1955. Upon graduation he entered into active duty with the United States Marine Corps and served until September 1958. He worked in Richmond, Va., for several years before returning to Newport News to eventually work in the printing industry. In 1969, he opened Graphic Color Litho, Inc, which he owned and operated until his retirement in 2000.


Bobby Brinkley



He was preceded in death by his parents; his two sisters, Frances Warren and Dorothy Hudson; and his son, Howell Keith Brinkley.

Survivors include his wife of 48 years, Kay Lacy Brinkley; his son, Robert Greg Brinkley and his wife, Cynthia; and his grandson, Robert Keith Brinkley.

He loved the water and spent many happy hours boating, fishing, and water skiing with family and friends. Among his greatest joys was getting together with his many friends since grade school and recounting "war stories" from the good ole days. His new favorite role was that of being GaPapa to his grandson Keith with whom he spent hours designing and building train tracks in the most unlikely places throughout the house.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, June 17, at Peninsula Funeral Home, 11144 Warwick Blvd, Newport News, Va. A funeral service will be conducted at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 18, at the funeral home.

Peninsula Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.  View and post condolences on our online guestbook at

Published in the Daily Press from June 17 to June 18, 2011.
Visit Guest Book


June 17, 2011
I have fond memories of Vernon from the our days at Newport News High School. He was two years ahead of me, but I knew him though his friendship with my brother who was also a class of '55 grad. My sincere condolences go out to you, his family during this time of grief.

June 17, 2011

I enjoyed having Vernon as a classmate at NNHS. He was one of the first to welcome me when I transferred from Wythe. My wife Laura also remembers him fondly from his attendance at reunions and the class brunches of recent years.

June 17, 2011
I remember Vernon fondly from our years in NNHS, as one of the 'good' tough guys; one of the ones you always wanted on your side, so it was no surprise to find that he went into the US Marines. Deep sympathy to Kay and all of his many friends.

June 17, 2011
Sincere condolences are extended to Bob's family, Kay and Greg and his family. Bob will be missed puttering in his garden and taking meticulous care of his beautiful lawn. After 20 years as his neighbor, we sincerely regret not getting to know him better. May you rest in peace Bob and we hope to see you on the other side.

Dick and Myra Adams

June 17, 2011
To the family of Vernon Brinkley. I knew Vernon from our days in high school and I will always remember the positive influence his presence had on those around him.
May God give you peace and comfort during this time of sorrow. I know Vernon will be missed by many.

June 17, 2011
To the Brinkley family: I, too, have happy memories of Vernon. His smile and positive attitude lit up a room. He'll be greatly missed.
Joan Lenhart Burgett, NNHS Class of '55

~ Joan Burgett, Ithaca, New York

June 17, 2011
My most vivid memory of Vernon was playing baseball with him on the NNHS team in 1955. Although the team didn't do well, Brinkley was a outstanding good third baseman. I can still remember him spearing a line drive off the bat of Sammy McIntyre of the hated "Crabbers". My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. May his soul rest in peace.

~ Don Cox, Columbia, Maryland
June 17, 2011

To The Family of our friend, Vernon:

Precious memories. Oh how sweet. Vernon has run his race and achieved his goal before a lot of his friends. I'm sure he is waiting at the gates of Heaven to greet all of us in due time. We weep not only for Vernon but for ourselves, for we shall miss him, but not for too long. Even though I am hundreds of miles away and our contacts few over the years, he was a cherished friend from the "good old days" of NNHS, class of '55. God bless all who mourn.

~ Lawrence Moss, Powder Springs, Georgia

June 17, 2011

At this time of sorrow, please note that the Bible states "the God who supplies endurance and comfort" is there for us. (Romans 15:5)

~ Lillian Foster, Hampton, Virginia

June 17, 2011

Dear family of Vernon Brinkley,
I was sad to learn of Vernon's passing. I have known him since grammar school and high school. He was a good person and I wanted to send my condolences to you. May he rest in peace.

~ Mickey Marcella

June 17, 2011

Good all around buddy, Best at NN high. Vernon will be missed.

~ Chuck Shipp

June 17, 2011

We have fond memories of Vernon from NNHS and old east end. Our condolences to the Brinkley family.

Bruce and Charlotte Horton Sims

~ Charlotte & Bruce Sims, Gloucester, Virginia

June 19, 2011

Our condolences to Greg and the Brinkley family. Jarrod Upton family

~ Jarrod Upton, Newport News, Virginia

June 20, 2011

A wonderful person, we lived far away, but I really enjoyed all of our visits together. He was a very caring person, and I will miss him. My sympathy to the family.

~ Jim Horton Class of 1955

June 22, 2011

  Our deepest sympathies are extended to the Brinkley family and their friends at this difficult time.

    From Joe Madagan ('57) of FL - 06/23/11, 2:16 PM - "Vernon Robert 'Bobby' Brinkley":

Hi, Carol:

Glad your Internet Service Provider has you up and running again, but the first email received from your new Fayetteville location was very sad. Thanks for passing along the news of the passing of Bobby Brinkley, Class of 1955. For those TYPHOON who knew Bob, let me share some of the three years he spent in the USMC.

Corporal Brinkley was the Non-Commissioned Officer-in-Charge of Gate 15, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, VA.
It was my pleasure to serve with Bob, as the Vehicular Gate Sentry. He was kind and generous, letting me ride to Newport News with him on weekend liberty, until his Honorable Discharge from the Marine Corps.

I can still remember he was getting ready to study at Old Dominion University as his time in the Corps was coming to a close. He had served on Sea Duty in the Marine Corps, and was a Plank Owner for the USS Saratoga (CV-60) when she was commissioned at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in New York.

Following that tour, he was assigned to the Marine Detachment, USS Leyte (CV-32) and upon completion of that tour he was assigned to the Marine Security Guard Company, Naval Ammunition Depot, St. Julians Creek.

When the Marine Barracks at St. Julians Creek was closed, he was transferred to Marine Barracks, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, VA for his "Sunset Tour" awaiting discharge from Active Duty.

Vernon was a high energy person, and was in the process of designing a tooth brush with tooth paste in the handle for the traveler and had hopes of getting a patent as he completed his tour. He had played football as a TYPHOON, so he was drafted to play football in the Marine Corps at Parris Island and later at Marine Barracks.

The tragic way he lost his son devastated him for many years. Rest In Peace, Marine.

Semper Fidelis,
TYPHOON Regards,
Joe Madagan ('57) of FL

   Amen to that.  Thank you, Joe; my sincerest condolences on the loss of your friend.

   This information is also posted here:   

  Y'all take good care of each other!  TYPHOONS FOREVER! We'll Always Have Buckroe!

                          Love to all, Carol





Carol Buckley Harty
7020 Lure Court
Fayetteville, NC 28311-9309

 Onward Christian Soldiers

Words by Sabine Baring Gould in Church Times, 1865

Music (St. Gertrude) by Arthur S. Sullivan, 1871

Onward Christian soldiers,
Marching as to war,
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before!
Christ, the royal Master,
Leads against the foe;
Forward into battle,
See His banner go!

Onward, Christian soldiers,
Marching as to war,
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before!

2. At the sign of triumph
Satan's host doth flee;
On, then, Christian soldiers,
On to victory!
Hell's foundation quiver
At the shout of praise;
Brothers, lift your voices,
Loud your anthems raise!

3. Like a mighty army
Moves the church of God;
Brothers, we are treading
Where the saints have trod;
We are not divided;
All one body we
One in hope and doctrine,
One in charity.

4. Onward, then, ye people,
Join our happy throng,
Blend with ours your voices
In the triumph song;
Glory, laud, and Honor,
Unto Christ the King;
This thro' countless ages
Men and angels sing.

"Onward Christian Soldiers" midi and lyrics courtesy of - 04/16/07

Greg Olsen Paintings courtesy of 01/27/05

Animated USMC Flag clip art courtesy of - 06/18/03

Blackwork Flowers Divider Line clip art courtesy of - 08/12/04

Marine Corps Seal clip art courtesy of the late Herbert Hice of MI - one of my Famous Marines who served in the South Pacific during WWII.
Thanks again, Herbie!!

Army Seal clip art courtesy of Al Farber ('64) of GA - 05/24/06 (still missing...)
Thanks, Al!
Replaced by Norm Covert ('61) of MD - 02/09/09
Thanks, Norm!

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