Robert Edward Bierbaum

September 29, 1923 ~ April 25, 2018 (age 94)
Robert Edward Bierbaum (Bob) passed away peacefully early on the morning of April 25th,
2018. He was born in Louisville, Ky on the 29th of September, 1923 to Clara Stierle and Irwin
Edward Bierbaum. Bob graduated from duPont Manual High School. He began attending the
J.B. Speed School of Engineering at the University of Louisville where he was a member of the
Naval ROTC program and was called up by the Navy to serve as an officer in WW II.

Bob trained at the Naval Station, Great Lakes where he met his wife to be, Joy Gladys Meyers
of Milwaukee. While training he also attended the engineering school at Marquette University.
After training was completed but before they could get married, Bob was sent to serve in the
Pacific Theater with a Naval Gunfire Support Unit as a Gunnery Directing Officer. His last
mission before the end of the war was to be one of the first troops to land on the Japanese
mainland for the Allies final assault. Thankfully the war ended before he had to complete this
dangerous assignment.

He returned to Louisville after the war and finished his chemical engineering degree at U of L.
Bob and Joy were married on the 21st of June 1947. They moved from Louisville to Elizabeth
NJ where Bob took a job with the Esso corporation in the refining division. Their daughter
Pamela was born while in New Jersey.
Bob then took a job with the Holston Defense Corporation and the family moved to Kingsport,
TN in 1951.

Bob volunteered again to serve his country during Korean War working as a Naval Supply
Management Officer in Newfoundland.
After his duty with the Navy, Bob returned to Kingsport and began work at Eastman Kodak in
the Research Department. His sons Neal and Clark were born during this time in Kingsport.
In early 1967 Kodak assigned Bob to a team of executives charged with the opening of the
new Kodak plant in Columbia, SC. Bob finished his career with Kodak as Head of Quality
Control for the Columbia plant.

While in Columbia, Bob was active in the Sierra Club and served as President for a number of
years. His commitment to our natural heritage, hard work, focus and dedication, working with
both business and political leaders in the Columbia area and Washington, lead to the
dedication of the Congaree Swamp National Monument in 1976. It has since become the
Congaree National Park, the largest tract of old growth bottom land hardwood forest left in the
United States.

Bob and Joy retired to Kingsport in the summer of 1987. He quickly became an active
volunteer with Habitat for Humanity as a member of the Colonial Heights Presbyterian Church,
the Kingsport Public Library and the Greenbelt Committee.

His true passion throughout his life was the time he spent in the out of doors. Fishing,
camping and hiking, both in the Smokies and the National Parks of the western US were where
he found his peace. His garden was where he found solace.

Bob's honesty, integrity and true love for his family and the natural world will be remembered
and cherished by those who knew and loved him.

Bob is survived by his wife of 71 years, Joy G Bierbaum of Kingsport, his daughter Pamela
Dixon (John Fry) of Orlando FL, his son, Neal (Rene) of Fremont, CA, his son, Clark (Ruth) of
Charlotte, NC, grandchildren Erica L Bolton, Brent C. Dixon, Craig R. Dixon, step grandchildren
Claire K. Bonnell and John F. Bonnell and 4 great-grandchildren.

His family would like to thank the staff of Asbury Place, Kingsport for their loving care during
his recent illness.

The family will receive friends from 2:30 to 3:45 pm on Saturday, April 28, 2018 at Hamlett-Dobson Funeral Home, Kingsport. The funeral service will follow at 4:00 pm. The Rev. Mr. J. Thomas Phillips officiating.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be made to Kingsport Habitat for Humanity, P.O. Box 5265, Colonial Heights Presbyterian, 213 Colonial Heights Rd., Kingsport, TN 37663, Friends of Congaree Swamp, P.O. Box 7746, Columbia, SC 29202, or the charity of your choice.


APR 28. 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM

Hamlett-Dobson Funeral Homes

117 E. Charlemont Ave.

Kingsport, TN, US, 37660

[email protected]

Memorial Service

APR 28. 4:00 PM

Hamlett-Dobson Funeral Homes

117 E. Charlemont Ave.

Kingsport, TN, US, 37660

[email protected]

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