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Published: Tuesday, 3/6/2012 - Updated: 2 years ago

Robert Badenhope, 1930-2012: Tool-and-die maker won patents for his designs

BLADE STAFF

Robert Badenhope, a retired design and production engineer who worked in research and development at the former Doehler-Jarvis Co., died March 3 in Laughlin Memorial Hospital in Greene- ville, Tenn. He was 81.

Mr. Badenhope, who lived near Chuckey in east Tennessee for more than 30 years, died from heart failure, said his daughter, Julia Badenhope.

Mr. Badenhope, who began his career with Doehler-Jarvis in the early 1950s as a journeyman tool-and-die maker, received several design patents for engine components for the company.

“He was a good draftsman and good in research and design. He also was a good tool-and-die maker,” said Dave Kurdys, who worked with Mr. Badenhope at the Smead Avenue plant.

Born July 16, 1930, to Helen and Johann Badenhope, he grew up in West Toledo and graduated at age 17 from De- Vilbiss High School. He enrolled at the University of Toledo and later went to work at Doehler-Jarvis as an apprentice in the tool-and-die shop, his family said.

He married the former Mary Eckhart in 1955. They divorced in 1982.

Mrs. Badenhope said she and her former husband moved to the Greeneville area in 1979 when her husband was transferred to the company plant there.

“He did several things down here. Part of one of his jobs was closing down plants. He had to close down a couple of those,” she said.

Julia Badenhope said her father left Doehler-Jarvis in the 1980s and began working as a consultant for other auto parts companies. She said he frequently traveled for his work, spending time in Korea, Italy, and France.

By mostly taking night classes, Mr. Badenhope graduated from the University of Toledo in 1972 with a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering.

“One of the most spectacular things he did was becoming a mechanical engineer. It took him 15 to 17 years to get his degree, but he got it. That is hard to do when you got five or six kids,” Mr. Kurdys said.

Ms. Badenhope said her father went on to teach classes in mechanical processes at the college.

Mr. Badenhope and his former wife were forming members of the Mudjaw Bowman Archery Club in North Toledo. Mr. Kurdys, who also belonged to the group, often joined the couple on hunting trips in Michigan in search of deer, bear, and moose.

Surviving are his daughters, Barbara Badenhope, Julia Badenhope, Maribeth Wilder, and Heidi Ross; son, John Robert Badenhope, and eight grandchildren.

Memorial services will be held at 5 p.m. Wednesday in the Jeffers Mortuary, Greenville, Tenn.

— Mark Reiter



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