Cover photo for James Robert Darby, III's Obituary
James Robert Darby, III Profile Photo
1960 James 2022

James Robert Darby, III

December 9, 1960 — September 14, 2022

Lieutenant Colonel James Robert Darby III, USAF (ret.), aka Robby or J.R., passed away on Wednesday, September 14, 2022, at Anne Arundel Medical Center – Annapolis, MD. He was born in Texarkana, TX, on December 9, 1960, to James Robert Darby, Jr. and Bessie Mae Darby; the youngest of four children.

Robby graduated from South Oak Cliff High School (Dallas, TX) in 1979; and later, obtained a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science at East Texas State University. He, also, earned two master’s degrees. Robby was a proud member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.

Lt. Col. Darby had a highly revered 22-year career in the United States Air Force. During his military career, he was a Navigator and Instructor Navigator on the KC-135, an Instructor at the Navigator School, and a Curriculum Writer for both Navigator School and Pilot Training. His flying career included 2,400 flying hours in the T-37, T-43, KC-135, An126, and Tu 154. Additionally, he served with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and worked with both the Treaty on Open Skies and the START Treaty. After retiring from the United States Air Force, Lt. Col. Darby furthered his career by working with the National Guard Bureau and most recently served as a Director for the Commander’s Action Group.

Robby married the love of his life, Caroline Darby (Harmon), in 2005. The two spent 22 years together traveling worldwide searching for exceptional calamari, cheering on the Dallas Cowboys, tasting exquisite foods, and spending time with friends and family.

As a man of many hobbies, Robby can be described as an avid reader, runner, wine enthusiast, music lover, phenomenal cook, and foodie. In 2004, he was the most sharply dressed man at a 1970s themed birthday party, arriving in a lime green leisure suit and white platform shoes.  He cared deeply for his friends and family who enjoyed his courage, dependability, willingness to help others, compassion, quick wit, and expert hair styling techniques. Robby is best remembered by his determination, which is represented in his favorite phrase “Invictus,” meaning unconquerable.

Lt. Col. James Robert Darby III was preceded in death by his mother, Bessie Mae Darby and uncle, Kenneth Wayne Darby. He is survived by his wife Caroline Rachel Darby of Bowie, MD; daughter Daryle Jewel René Darby of Tyler, TX; father James Robert Darby, Jr. of Dallas, TX; siblings Sandra Jo Beal (Leonard Beal) of Lancaster, TX, Cynthia Diane McCoy (Michael McCoy) of Bowie, MD, and Kerry Douglas Mayberry (Geneva Mayberry) of Austin, TX; and a host of greatly adored uncles, aunts, nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation at and the National Scleroderma Association at



To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James Robert Darby, III, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

All services are Private.

Beall Funeral Home


Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Visits: 127

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree