Rev. Robert Allen Esters, Sr. Profile Photo
1949 Rev. Robert 2024

Rev. Robert Allen Esters, Sr.

June 9, 1949 — June 30, 2024

Evansville, IN

Rev. Robert Allen Esters, a devoted servant of the Lord and father of Evansville Mayor Stephanie Terry, peacefully passed away at Ascension St. Vincent Evansville with family by his side. Born on June 9, 1949, to Rev. Jesse J. and Mrs. Rosie Esters, Robert grew up in Evansville and graduated from Central High School, where he and his brother were renowned for their achievements in football and track.

He was called to the ministry in 1985 while under the tutelage of Rev. Joseph Trask. 

On March 7, 1991, Rev. Esters began his pastoral journey at First Missionary Baptist Church in Henderson, Ky. For over three decades, he dedicated his life to the ministry, enriching the lives of countless individuals through his preaching, teaching, and community service. Under his leadership, the church saw tremendous growth in its music ministry, Sunday School attendance, and Wednesday Night Family Bible Study.

Rev. Esters had a profound vision for the church's future, which led to the acquisition of property on Washington Street and the clearing of land on Elm Street for the construction of a New Life Center. His unwavering faith and prayers guided the church through the initial stages of planning and fundraising for this significant project.

Beyond his pastoral duties, Rev. Esters was deeply involved in his community. He worked faithfully in the Green River Valley District and served as a past District Moderator. He was also a beloved football coach at Benjamin Bosse High School for 24 years, mentoring young athletes at the Cub, J.V., and Varsity levels.

Rev. Esters' academic accomplishments include an Associate Degree in Biblical Studies, a Bachelor's Degree in Religious Education, and a Master's Degree in Ministry from Trinity Theological College and Trinity Theological Seminary in Newburgh, Indiana.

He retired after a 36-year career with the Evansville Housing Authority and operated Sparkling Brite Cleaning, Inc. with his wife, Tressie, from 2001 to 2019. His voice and teachings reached many through his Sunday morning broadcasts on 1400AM/98.5FM Radio.

Outside of preaching, Robert enjoyed watching CNN and always being there for his grandchildren, showing up whenever and wherever they needed him. In his final year of life, he took great pride in canvassing, critiquing speeches, attending community debates, and ultimately calling his baby girl, "Madam Mayor," of whom he was immensely proud.

Rev. Esters is survived by his wife of 51 years, Tressie M. Esters; his children, Robert Esters Jr. and Stephanie Terry (Marques); his grandchildren, Denereo Clay, Marques Terry, and Myles Terry; and many beloved nieces and nephews. He is also remembered by his sisters-in-law Garnetta Esters, Georgia Fellows (Harold), Bettie, Martha, Heartent Landours, all of Evansville, and brother-in-law Jethro Landours of Wichita, TX. He was preceded in death by his brothers, Jesse J. Esters, Jr. and James Adial Esters, and his sisters, Mildred Perry and Shirley Chisler.

In celebration of Rev. Esters' life, visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday at First Missionary Baptist Church, 20 South Elm St, Henderson. Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Saturday at Nazarene Missionary Baptist Church, 867 E Walnut St, Evansville. Services will be followed by interment at Oak Hill Cemetery. His family extends heartfelt gratitude to the nurses and aides at Ascension for their compassionate care. A special son in the ministry, Rev. George Madison who was always there.

Rev. Robert Allen Esters' legacy of faith, love, and service will continue to inspire and guide all who knew him. He preached the gospel until the end, and his spirit lives on in the hearts of his congregation and community.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Rev. Robert Allen Esters, Sr., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, July 5, 2024

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

First Missionary Baptist Church - Henderson

20 South Elm Street, Henderson, KY 42420

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Funeral Service

Saturday, July 6, 2024

11:00am - 1:30 pm (Central time)

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Saturday, July 6, 2024

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