Music 10

Robert Leray Saville

December 23, 1957 ~ November 6, 2021 (age 63)

Obituary

To fully explain the life of Robert Leray Saville (Robbie) would take more eloquence than any language currently possesses.  There simply aren't enough adjectives to fully describe all of his traits, nor enough verbs to understand the impact of his actions.  Nevertheless, as I was honored by the request, I shall give it my best attempt:

 

To begin to understand this man, you have to first understand that he packed approximately 10 lifetimes worth of experiences into a short 63 year time frame.  He did this by mastering perpetual motion.  His body was always moving, save when he slept, and his mind never stopped under any conditions.  He was speaking before he was a year old, and he never stopped. To hear him speak was to know that you were going to laugh, and you were guaranteed to learn something you didn't know.  He was an absolute sponge for all information.  No book was safe if it was near him and he remembered probably 95% of anything he read.  He was Google before it existed.  In his 63 years of life, he never encountered a machine he couldn't fix.  He often didn't need a manual or any instructions.  He would simply dive in and figure it out, often in an unbelievably short time frame, and before you could even call a repairman. 

Now, many people, if they had this vast intellect, would covet it and use it for their own personal gain.  Not Robbie Saville.  

One of his most endearing traits was his willingness to help anyone that asked for it (In the 39 years I knew him, I never once saw him refuse someone that asked for his assistance with anything). Indeed, oftentimes he would pre-emptively offer his help, so as not to shame the person in need of having to ask for it.  This trait stemmed from an unconditional love and respect that he had for every single person he would encounter throughout his life (Taught to him by his Mother Laura who remains to this day the strongest woman I have ever met, followed closely by his Sister Wanda).  The respect of Robbie Saville didn't have to be 'earned'.  He did not place it on a pedestal as if he was better than you and you had to eventually get to it.  It was given, freely and without precondition.  This helps explain why nearly everyone he encountered loved him back in return.  He never met a stranger and oftentimes he would travel several states away and still meet people he had known from many years prior.  And he did travel quite a bit in his life, which leads us to another of his impressive traits:

If you have ever seen a Cheetah running, an Eagle in flight, or a Shark swimming, you may have some idea of what it was to see Robbie Saville play a guitar.  He made playing look effortless, the equivalent for most of us of drawing a single breath.  He did it by rehearsing and practicing religiously, from an extremely young age.  He could play anything from simply hearing it and, to my knowledge, never actually learned how to read music.  His favorite person to play music with was his Brother Ronnie, and to see them on stage together was like catching the sun and moon in the sky at the same time: you never forgot it, and always yearned to see it again.  He was a member of innumerable bands throughout his lifetime and he loved being in each and every one of them.  Such was his skill that he almost assuredly would have 'made it' and gone on to become a household name had one pivotal event not occurred:

On October 18, 1982 Robbie Saville had a son.  

If you were to take all of the traits above and combine them, you would not to begin to scratch the surface of his prowess as a father.  He approached fatherhood the same way he approached everything in his life:  Constant vigilance, unconditional love, and perpetual practice.  He had infinite patience with his son, who was oftentimes stubborn as an ox and always had a million questions.  Each question would be greeted with a smile and not a simple 'yes' or 'no' but an in depth explanation as to 'why'.  He sacrificed a promising music career to go get a 9 to 5 job so he could support his son and put food on the table.  Such was his gifts as a father that he didn't restrict them to only his blood.  He gladly, without any hesitation, would take other children under his wings so that they too could experience what it was like to have such a loving man to look up to, and depend upon.  It is not an exaggeration to say that, for me personally, he is the blueprint of how to be a father.  

At this point, we have probably surpassed the believability of his life but somehow, amazingly, he had one last set to play:

9 years ago, on October 2, 2012 Robbie Saville became a Grandfather.  I had thought that I knew the depth of his love in all the time I had spent with him.  Boy was I wrong.  All told, at the time of his passing, he would have 3 Granddaughters and Lord how he spoiled them rotten.  His name changed to either 'Pepaw' or 'Papa Robbie' and he wore those titles like a badge of honor.  Every act, every motion, every word was driven towards making sure those three little girls were happy and to say he succeeded would be the understatement of the century.  I think that, if you were to ask him, he would say one of the few regrets of his life was that he didn't get enough time with them (Not for lack of trying, if it was up to him he would have created a 25th hour in the day to get more time with them).  However, all 3 of those girls got enough time to understand their Grandfather loved them beyond everything else and would give them the Sun in the sky if they would have asked for it.

So there we have it:

Genius Musician
Beloved by Everyone
Father and Grandfather who loved his children and grandchildren more than life itself.

If this seems unbelievable, I understand completely.  To know Robbie Saville was to suspend belief and just enjoy the time he was in your life, because you certainly didn't forget it.

He is survived by:

His wife Teresa Saville, in whom he found the unconditional love and stability he had searched for his entire life.
His three sons:
   Robert Wayne Saville (with wife Amanda and daughters Lilly and Annabelle)
   Brandon Spivey (with Julia)
   Nick Spivey (with wife Amanda and daughter Ella)
   Mother Laura Saville
   Sister Wanda Bauknight (with husband Garnette)
   Brother Ronnie Saville (with wife Leslie)
   And a great many nieces and nephews, whom he loved and cherished so very much.

 

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