William Robnett “Rob” Schoolfield was born in Pikeville, Tennessee on December 15, 1953, on his father’s birthday. He passed away at 68 years old on March 12, 2022, after a seven-month fight against pancreatic cancer.
He is survived by wife, Brenda Thompson Schoolfield; son Ellis Richard Schoolfield; daughter Katherine Eunice Schoolfield; siblings James Robert Schoolfield, Jr., Thomas Lurton Schoolfield, John David Schoolfield, and Frances Suzanne Schoolfield Sapp; along with nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, James Robert Schoolfield, Sr. and Hannah Tom Robnett Schoolfield.
Rob graduated from Bledsoe County High School in 1972. He earned degrees from Tennessee technological University, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and Bob Jones University and studied at The University of South Carolina. He studied percussion with Charles Hiebert, Joseph Rasmussen, Monty Coulter, and James Hall.
Rob was a musician, playing percussion and guitar. He played with his friends in the Pure Mountain Water Band (known as The Tennesseans at Six Flags Over Georgia). He performed with regional orchestras fin Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina as well as the orchestra at First Presbyterian Church of Greenville, South Carolina.
Rob loved learning and teaching. He taught music in Tennessee and Alabama before moving to South Carolina to teach for 35 years at Bob Jones University (BJU). At BJU, he founded the percussion program as Director of Percussion Studies. He supervised the equipment and logistics along with teaching private lessons and conducting the University Percussion Ensemble. He also served as associate conductor of the BJU Symphonic Wind Band. He performed with the University Symphonic Orchestra and the University Opera Association.
Rob said that he always wanted to a father; and he was a loving and kind father. He and his wife rejoiced in their children’s accomplishments and growth. He loved his brothers and sister, and their children and grandchildren. Family was second only to his heavenly Father.
Rob died in faith, without fear, and with confidence in God. Rob looked for a “city having foundations whose builder and maker is God” (Hebrews 11:10). Rob believed that he would see his Redeemer; and he is now healed and saved.
A memorial service was held on Thursday, March 17 at First Presbyterian Church of Greenville in Greenville, South Carolina.
A private graveside service will be held in Pikeville, Tennessee on Saturday, May 7. A public memorial service will be held at Pikeville United Methodist Church in Pikeville on Saturday, May 7 from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Cancer Society of Greenville County, 113 Mills Avenue, Greenville, SC 29605 or to the Gingery-Mack Music Scholarship at Bob Jones University, 4 Timbernotch Ct, Taylors, SC 29687.
**A public Memorial Service is being held in Pikeville, Tennessee at Pikeville United Methodist Church on Saturday, May 7, from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. for Robby Schoolfield.