Stephen B. Hopkins, Jr. – Benton, IL

Stephen Buxton Hopkins, Jr., age 82, of Benton, Illinois; died Tuesday morning at his home.

His wishes are to be cremated with a Celebration of Life to be scheduled at a future date.

Leffler Funeral Home of Benton; is in charge of the cremation arrangements.

He was born on January 12, 1942, in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of Stephen Buxton Hopkins, Sr., and Margaret (Simpson) Hopkins. His father passed away when he was six years old. His mother would later marry Bert Blow. Stephen was raised by his stepfather and mother.
Steve was a graduate of SIU – Carbondale. He was a U.S. Army Veteran, serving during the Vietnam War time.
His working career consisted of being a Nursing Home Administrator for over 35 years. He last worked for Stonebridge Nursing Home of Benton.
Steve was a renown CBJ (Certified BBQ Judge) with both the Kansas City Barbecue Society and the Memphis Barbecue Network. He also assisted with the Veteran Honor Flight in both Marion and Effingham, Illinois.

He was a past member of the Rotary Club and was a member of the Illinois Nursing Home Administrator’s Association where he was a past recipient of Administrator of the Year. He was a Christian and was associated with the Free Will Baptist denomination.

Steve also supported the Red Cross by being a blood donor, he enjoyed BBQ Judging, working on his lawn, golfing, and walking. He was an avid SIU football fan and was a season ticket holder. He also loved to watch Alabama football “Roll Tide.” He loved baseball especially the St. Louis Cardinals and locally he was a season ticket holder with the Southern Illinois Miner’s baseball team. His family said he would set aside 90 minutes per day to read books. They said he would watch FOX News and was a Republican.
He is survived by his loving wife Loretta (Robinson) Hopkins of Benton, IL; a daughter Lynsey Hopkins of Benton, IL; two step-daughters Brandy McClintock of Benton, IL, and Caroline Morgan of West Frankfort, IL; two grandchildren: Kaven Eston Pense and Aubrie Dawn Pense; step-grandchildren including: Brandon, Emily, Allyson, Mia and Zelda; two step-great-grandchildren Kyree and Harmony; in-laws that include: Leon Robinson of West Frankfort, IL, Lottie Toler of Marion, IL, Randall Ross Robinson and wife Brenda of Birmingham, AL, Nancy Lare and husband Jim of West Frankfort, IL, Barbara Innis of West Frankfort, IL; and several nieces and nephews.

Mr. Hopkins was preceded in death by his father Stephen Buxton Hopkins, Sr., his mother and stepfather Margaret and Bert Blow; a brother Thomas Simpson Hopkins (former announcer for the Kansas City Chiefs); his father and mother-in-law Millard and Geraldine Robinson; two brothers-in-law Frank Robinson and Richard Robinson; and a sister-in-law Moetta Robinson.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Veteran Honor Flight of Southern Illinois ( or to the Wounded Warrior Project (

To leave online condolences to the family, or to share memories of Mr. Hopkins, visit

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