Dr. Lofton passed away Saturday, January 1, 2022 after a year long battle with ALS. He died at home surrounded by family and friends.
Robert was the oldest of three boys born to Matt and Frankie Lofton. He was born in Alexandria, Louisiana and raised in Ball, Louisiana. By the age of 16 he knew he wanted to be a veterinarian and he set his sights to meet that goal by working in local vet clinics making plans to attend LSU where he continued to work in local clinics and work on campus. He attended Auburn School of Veterinary Medicine and made lifelong friends and colleagues while a student.
After graduation he practiced for a year in Roanoke, Virgina then moved to Lake Charles, LA where he built a small animal practice, University Animal Clinic and worked for 40 years. While in Lake Charles he was involved in many areas of veterinary medicine on local, state and national levels. He was a deacon at Trinity Baptist Church where he taught Sunday School for young marrieds for most of his years at Trinity. He was also active in the community with Little League, Scouts and Kiwanis.
Upon retirement Robert moved to Opelika, AL to move to his wife’s hometown and to help take care of his mother-in-law. At this time he was able to fulfil another dream of being on staff at AU Veterinary School. At Auburn he worked with Fourth Year students in the Community Practice and still be able to work with clients while teaching the students to put into practice what they had learned the three years previous.
Once again he retired from his wonderful profession and had to learn to fill his day with new friends and hobbies and get some travel time in as well. Staying still was not easy or fun for him so he turned his attention to local politics and won a seat on the Opelika City Council. This was another lifelong dream that he did not have time to pursue while practicing medicine. He also got back into the role of Bible teaching at First Baptist Opelika by teaching a wonderful class of people who were a great supporter during his final battle with ALS.
Robert loved life! He had many loves the first being his family, then veterinary medicine, followed close behind. He felt he got to practice in the best of times and never dreaded a day at work. He loved the outdoors whether it was working or playing. He loved the mountains and backpacking became a great hobby. He loved his native state of Louisiana and soon became adjusted to the marshlands near Lake Charles along with the wonderful food found there. He loved everything Auburn! Vet School, football, basketball, baseball and anything else Auburn. He was known to throw a roll of toilet paper after a victory or two.
Most of all he loved people! He could talk to anyone and find out more about them in a short period of time. He loved the young and the old, the successful and those who needed a hand up. Most importantly he loved the Lord and wanted to be sure that people knew the Lord as their personal savior. His first prayer about ALS was that God would be glorified in the process.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Matt and Frankie Lofton, a niece Lynne Lofton Walker, his in-laws, John and Margaret Melson, and sister in law, Barbara Lavallet, who also died from ALS, and her husband, Phil.
He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Lela and their son Jesse Robert Lofton, brothers and sister in laws Dewey and Karen Lofton, Terry and Brenda Lofton, sister in law and brother in law, Sally Melson Phillips and Jody Phillips and numerous nieces and nephews, and of course his faithful dog, Grace.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Alabama chapter of ALS, 300 Cahaba Park Circle Ste 209, Birmingham, AL 3542 or Circles Opelika, 2133 Executive Park Drive, Opelika, AL in Roberts memory.