Highly respected for his knowledge and zeal for all matters concerning the growth and overall well-being of the Town of Farragut, which manifested itself with more than a quarter-century of service on Farragut Municipal Planning Commission, Bob “Robin” Hill passed away Wednesday, July 10. He was 90.
Bob’s work with Town of Farragut was matched by what many observed as “an exemplary career” in Project Engineering Management at Y-12 in Oak Ridge.
Rita Holladay worked alongside Bob and succeeded him as FMPC chair — saying he held that post for more than 25 years — and fondly recalled his work ethic and commitment.
“After my husband, my sons and grandson, he was one of my favorite men in the whole world,” she said.
“He had such knowledge, and was always willing to share it, and he was such a help to me. When he said he was going to retire from the Planning Commission, we talked a lot about the procedure of things — not about individual issues, but more on how to run the meetings,” Holladay added.
Also a passionate environmentalist, “He resigned from the Planning Commission because he was going to be serving as president of the (local) Sierra Club, and he knew it would take a lot of time,” the current FMPC chair said of Bob.
“He loved the outdoors and loved to hike around Farragut, and did some major hikes too,” she added.
The last time she saw Bob, which was a few weeks before he died, Holladay observed “he was still very sharp, very focused on whatever was going on. I remember thinking, ‘I just hope when I’m his age, that I am able to be that sharp and focused, too.’”
Betty Dick, one of the Town’s founders and current FMPC member, also remembered Bob fondly. “He always had the Town in his heart and in his mind. He was always positive, and had good suggestions on what could be done,” she said.
“I had great respect for him. He contributed a lot toward the development of the town, and he never stopped trying to better the Town with his suggestions.”
Long-time FMPC member Ed St. Clair knew Bob well. In fact, he hired fellow engineer St. Clair to work for him in Oak Ridge in 1975. He later suggested St. Clair serve on Town Architectural Review Committee that oversaw construction of Town Hall in the early 1990s.
They later served together on FMPC. “He was one of the best individuals I ever worked with, either in Oak Ridge or the community,” St. Clair said. “He was a true champion for the citizens, and what he did and supported set the stage for much of what we see in the Town today.
“He was a friend to all, and very trustworthy. He was of the highest integrity, and people respected his opinions because he had a reason and rationale for them.”
St. Clair said Bob’s commitment never wavered.
“He called me the week he died and left me a voice mail. .... He had called to ask me to talk to (Farragut Mayor Ron Williams) about the urban growth boundary,” St. Clair said.
“He was interested in the community until his last breath. The community will miss him.”
A member of The Episcopal Church of the Good Samaritan along North Cedar Bluff Road, Robert also enjoyed Knoxville Symphony Orchestra Concerts and a diverse set of other arts and continuing education programs.
He is survived by daughters Anita F. Hill and Kathleen H. Drevik, and granddaughters Abigail E. Drevik and Mackenzie D. Treadway.
A memorial service was held Wednesday, July 17, at The Episcopal Church of the Good Samaritan.