Frank Marvin Roberts

Published 9:32 pm Friday, March 17, 2017

Frank Marvin Roberts, 88, of 146 Riverwood Drive, Hertford, N.C., passed away on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, in Sentara Albemarle Medical Center, Elizabeth City, where he was surrounded by his family.

Mr. Roberts was born in New York City, N.Y., on Nov. 8, 1928, and was the only child of the late David Roberts and Sophia Bainder Roberts Ginsberg. Two months after graduating from Bentley School in Manhattan, he joined the Army, taking basic training in Fort Dix, N.J., and later was stationed in California and Washington state. Serving in the Signal Corps as part of the Technical Service Unit in Nome, Alaska, in the evening he was part of the Armed Forces Radio Service, broadcasting over WXLN, The Voice of the Arctic. After discharge, he took advantage of the G.I. Bill, attending the School of Radio Technique in New York City. With that in hand, he worked for stations in New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, New York, Iowa and Edenton, NC. Later, he turned to television, and did work in Waterloo, Iowa, Washington, N.C., and Virginia Beach.

A free-lance writer, he had regular contributions for Grit, Country Weekly, and other publications, and later worked with the Virginian-Pilot, the Daily News, the Suffolk News-Herald, and other local papers. For many years, he did interviews and music show reviews, and met many famous stars including Roy Acuff, Faron Young, Julio Iglesias, Patti Page, Shirley Jones, Conway Twitty, The Statler Brothers, The Oak Ridge Boys, Willie Nelson and Alabama. With all these years in the music industry, his collections of pictures and records grew in number to more than 3,000, and are now housed in the Jefcoat Museum in Murfreesboro, N.C.

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A veteran of World War II, he enjoyed membership in the American Legion, and had been a faithful member of Hertford Baptist Church for many years.

Surviving are his wife of nearly 57 years, Valeria White Roberts; a daughter, Jennifer R. Mercer and husband, Mike, of Elizabeth City; two sons, David N. Roberts, of Edenton, and Clavis B. Roberts, of Hertford; four grandchildren, Jessica Stokely (Chris Stanton), Christy Whedbee (Chuck), Steven Roberts and Josh Roberts; and four great-grandchildren, Madison Applegate, Trinity Stanton, Faith Roberts and Teagan Whedbee.

A memorial service will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. in Hertford Baptist Church and will be conducted by the Rev. Don Carter. A private burial will be in Cedarwood Cemetery. Friends may join the family in the social hall immediately following the church service on Saturday, and all other times at the residence.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Hertford Baptist Church, P.O. Box 34, Hertford, NC 27944, or to any chapter of the SPCA.

Miller & Van Essendelft, Funeral and Cremation Providers, 1125 Harvey Point Road, Hertford, is assisting the family with arrangements, and online condolences may be made by visiting