Oct 182013

Robert L. Sanchez, 92, passed away on Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, in Surprise. Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Oct. 17 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Winslow, with Father Jeffrey King officiating. Interment followed in Desert View Cemetery in Winslow.
He was born on May 15, 1921, in Winslow. He graduated from Winslow High School on May 29, 1941.
Upon graduating from high school, he enlisted in the United States Army and was placed into the Army Air Corps. Following completion of basic training, he entered training as a B17 Ball Turret Gunner. He then deployed to the Europe front and flew eight missions. On the ninth mission, his aircraft was shot down by enemy fire. The mission on which he was shot down was called Black Thursday on Oct. 14, 1943. He spent 20 months as a prisoner of war in Stalag 17. He was released as a POW at the end of the war in 1945 and honorably discharged in October 1945. During his enlistment he was awarded the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart and several campaign medals. He was inducted into the Caterpillar Club and awarded the Gold Silk Worm for having to emergency jump during combat.
Upon his return, he married Virginia Chavez and raised 10 children while working at the U.S. Post Office. He was active in his church, St. Joseph, Knights of Columbus, VFW and several other organizations.
Survivors include his children, Linda Chavez, Robert Sanchez, Irene Ochoa, Rosalie Brisendine, Kathleen Sanchez, Veronica Flanagan, Priscilla Sanchez-Mackiney and Terry Perez; his sister, Margaret Mazza; 25 grandchildren; 46 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Eulalio Sanchez and Antonia Sanchez; his wife, Virginia Sanchez; two brothers, Lawrence Sanchez and Daniel Sanchez; three sisters, Charlotte Monsegur, Helen Ortega and Beatrice Galvan; and two sons, Edward Sanchez and Michael Sanchez.
Greer’s Mortuary of Winslow was in charge of the arrangements.RobertSanchezObit