Sgt. Major Robert Fairbanks, USMC

Obituary of Sgt. Major Robert S. Fairbanks, USMC

Sgt. Major Robert S. Fairbanks, USMC, died on June 26, 2019 at the age of 93. 


Robert served in the military on active duty for 22 years from 1942 to 1964, when he was released and transferred to the Fleet Reserve to complete 30 years of service.  During World War II, he served with the Naval Amphibious Forces on an LST landing craft and participated in the D-Day landing in Normandy and later in the liberation of the Philippines, the invasion of Okinawa, and the occupation of Japan.  He was discharged from the Navy in 1946 after serving for four years with the rank of Quartermaster First Class.  Shortly thereafter, he re-enlisted into the Marine Corps starting over as a Private.  He quickly rose through the ranks to become Sgt. Major.


During the Korean War, he was a machine gun section leader and served with the 1st Provincial Marine Brigade, among the first Marines to enter the Korean War.  Robert participated in the Inchon Landing, the recapture of Seoul, the move into North Korea, and the Chosin Reservoir Campaign, among numerous other actions.

Robert was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Combat V for Valor, the Combat Action Ribbon with Gold Star for multiple awards, 4 Presidential Unit Citations, 8 Bronze Battle Stars, and 2 Korean Presidential Citations, among other awards.


Following his military career, he became a real estate broker.


He follows his wife of 60 years, Margaret, who died in 2012; and leaves four daughters, Debra and Diane Fairbanks of Berlin, NJ, Denise DeSignor (Tom) of Media, PA, Doreen Salvatore (Derek) of Mt. Laurel, NJ; two grandsons, Tony DeSignor (Samantha) and Chris DeSignor; and great-granddaughter Audrina DeSignor.


Services will be held privately.  Interment will be held at a later date at Brig. General Willam C. Doyle Veterans Memorial Cemetery, Arneytown, NJ, with his beloved wife Margaret, together as one once again.  In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the angels at Samaritan Hospice, 5 Eves Dr., Suite 300, Marlton, NJ 08053 or the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758516, Topeka, KS, 66675-8516.

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Sgt. Major Robert