Blind Restorer Inducted to EDGE&TA Hall of Fame
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Some jobs – wiring, finding replacement parts and transporting equipment – he simply cannot do. Then, he turns to his son-in-law, Alan Brennan, for help. Alan marvels at how Bob’s other senses compensate. “I really admire how he can hear whether an engine is running like it should,” Alan says. Bob also turns the painting over to a helper, Danny Youngers. However, he’s quick to add, “I don’t ask them to do anything I can do.”
Like many restorers, Bob grew up on a farm where he much preferred his father’s 1927 John Deere D to the horse and mule team. After graduating from high school in 1949, Bob farmed with a 1937 John Deere B and a 1950 Allis-Chalmers WD. Then, like his father before him, he transitioned into the construction business, building residential and small commercial buildings. Failing eyesight forced him to retire in 1988.
Bob is an active member of the Kansas and Oklahoma Steam & Gas Engine Club and takes part in its annual show. His courage, determination and perseverance make him an excellent role model for other members. FCEugene Blake is a retired Presbyterian minister now living in Winfield, Kan. His work has been published in Green Magazine, Ageless Iron Almanac and Successful Farming.
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