Bobby Plott's Email

October 5, 2012 ROBERT PLOTT wrote:

Hi Glen,

WOW!  Sounds like you have had a long, storied, and fun life.  I really enjoyed your bio -- so many places and different and interesting work experiences.  I'm impressed!  Did your invention have anything to do with fiber optics?  I seem to recall that you and Harry were working on something of that nature for telephone lines.

Like you, I was sort of the "black sheep" of the family.  In 1955, after studying civil engineering  at VPI for a little over two years, I resigned and went North to Washington, D.C. for a job with the Army Corps of Engineers, where I first met in 1957 and later married in 1960 a beautiful, five foot seven inches tall, black-haired, blue-eyed, Irish, Catholic girl named Barbara.

Career wise, I worked on the Civil Works side of the Corps of Engineers for 42 years.  Twelve of those years were spent working in the field on comprehensive river basin-wide studies which addressed water supply, pollution abatement, flood control and flood protection projects, and water-related recreation facilities in the Potomac River Basin at the Washington District Office and in the Susquehanna River Basin at the Baltimore District Office before transferring to the headquarters Office of the Chief of Engineers in Washington D.C. to work for thirty years on the national Floodplain Management Services Program. The Program provided information and planning assistance to State and local governments so they could address their flood problems and coordinated their needs with the Corps.  Along the way, after six years of night school, I finally received a BA degree in Economics at Maryland University, and later a MS degree in Water Resources Planning at Colorado State University before becoming Chief of the Program.

I retired in 1977 [1997], but last year the Corps brought me back to speak at the Golden Anniversary Celebration of the Program.  While I was there, their history office asked me to allow them to record my career experiences for their archives.  Just last week, I finished finalizing some sixty pages of interview transcripts and turned over all my old files on the Program.  It was a lot of work going back and sort of reliving forty-two years of my life, but it brought back a lot of good memories.  Plus, the doctors say it keeps your mind active.  Ha!

When I left Danville, I had relatives all over the place.  My Dad was one of eight children and my Mom had three brothers.  So I left behind parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles , and a slew of first cousins.  Today I only have one 95 year old aunt, Dorothy Plott, living at Abingdon Place and one first cousin, Frank Plott, living at 823 Kristen Lane in Danville.  The last time I saw Buster was at my Mom's funeral.  Last I heard, he had retired, sold his hardware store in Chatham, VA, and moved to the coast.

  Take care and hang in there ole buddy,

From: Glen Williamson []
Sent: Friday, September 28, 2012 5:33 PM
Subject: Re: A voice from the past

Hey Bobby,


Damn you're ALIVE!

Thanks for getting back to me, you've made my day/week.

Boy, Linda Sue Pagel will be so happy that you are still with us!

Wonderful family, so many grand kids and great grand kids--and you're Methodist. :-)

I have two kids and only one grand child--so far.

     A not so quick catch up on my life: "it's been FUN, all in all"--to quote JD.

I quit school at sixteen and took up with a fast motorcycle--that you may remember :-) . 

I went to work for my brother, Harry, installing and repairing police and taxi radios in Petersburg.

Worked for Western Electric in stalling telephone offices (Danville included) and worked on SAGE, air defense project--learned a lot.
Saved my money and went out West prospecting for uranium--didn't find a thing, but what an Adventure!

That was followed by the USAF where I taught B-52 pilots to do something that I could not do myself--typical.

That was followed by eighteen months, as a civilian on a Pacific island working on an antimissile system, for which
I was paid obscene amounts of money--which didn't last long.

That was followed by work on an invention of mine, and a patent.

Then marriage to a wonderful girl--really Cute and Smart, which was wonderful for ten years. Two great kids, a boy and a girl,
Lee and Laura came from that. Sadly, "that" ended in divorce.

During this time I found work as an electrical engineer for the next thirty years in the Raleigh, RTP area; mostly consulting.

Five years before retirement, I was appointed to the faculty of the ECE Department at NCSU in Raleigh teaching senior design.
That turned out to be my most fun job, Ever!

I retired to Danville in 2000, moving into my Mom's house shortly after her passing at ninety six.

In 2005 I had a series of strokes that pretty well did a major RESET on my Butt! A couple of years afterwards, I fell and had surgery
on the old noggin. That put me in a nursing home for a while, until a couple of buddies busted me out and thankfully, I landed back
in my own home--with all my toys, and my cat Buddy.

So here I sit in front of my computers, building and running my several web sites, happy as if I had good sense--well almost.

Sorry Bob, for the longggg bio, but, as you see, I couldn't hold a job for very long.

Speaking of Westbrook, I devoted a web page to he and Hathaway some years back, and you are in it several places:

I've forwarded your email to Linda and Billy, and I've enclosed their email addresses.

Linda Sue Pagel  <>

Billy Hill  <>

OK, on your son, the Historian, wanting to visit Danville, PLEASE come by to see me when you guys come down! Please... That would make my Month!

        Bob, thanks again, for writing,

Glen A. Williamson
372 Norwood Drive
Danville, VA 24540-2119

888 396-5091, 919 341-1157

P.S. Do you know if Buster is still above ground, I snail-mailed him also, but haven't back--yet.

On 9/28/12 3:55 PM, ROBERT PLOTT wrote:

    Hi Glen,

    What a plesant suprise hearing from you.

    Thinking of Lee Street brings back a lot of fond childhood memories, particularly those you and I shared together with Johnny Westbrook.

    I, also, ran accross Jimmy Gravely when he was minister at Mosley Memorial Methodist, my old church.  Also met Billy Hill when I was down for my Dad's funeral.  Billy and Linda Sue were my nextdoor neighbors, you know.

    I'm ALIVE and doing well.  Have my daughter and youngest son and spouses and two grandsons, a granddaughter, and two greatgrandaughters living in the area.  My oldest son and spouce with four granddaughters, a grandson, and a greatgranddaughter lives near Detroit, MI. My wife passed several years ago, so they all call me dailey and we get together quite often.

    My youingest son is, our family historian, and just last week he asked me to visit Danville with him so that could take pictures of my home on Lee Street and record my memories about growing up there.  Maybe we could get together when I come down.

    Your childhood friend, Bob.