Robbins, Joseph Williams, Sr.

Longtime President And Owner Of Robbins & Bohr And Served His Community Well

  • Saturday, September 10, 2022
Joseph Williams Robbins, Sr.
Joseph Williams Robbins, Sr.

Joseph Williams Robbins, Sr. passed away on September 7, 2022. He loved his family, friends,  associates and community.


Joe was born June 17, 1942, to  Margaret Williams Robbins and Frank Mix Robbins, Jr.  His grandparents were Frank Mix Robbins, Sr., Dorothy Kibler Robbins, Annie Scholze Williams and Joseph Vincent Williams, Sr. Joe was named after the latter, who served as Hamilton County Judge. Joe, an Eagle Scout, graduated from Baylor School in 1960 and from Vanderbilt University in 1964.


He entered the U.S. Army at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina, as  2nd Lieutenant in the 1st Psychological Warfare Battalion.  He served in the Dominican Republic and  was awarded the Army Commendation Metal.


Joe was very active: hiking Mt LeConte, playing tennis, bicycling, sailing on the lake, jogging, and even challenged himself to run 10 miles while on his annual family vacation.


Joe demonstrated his engineering skills at an early age when he transformed a lawn mower engine into a go-cart. He also organized  the rebuilding of the bridge over the creek at nearby Mabbit Springs in addition to caring for the family’s apple orchard and  bee hives. In 1967, Joe joined Robbins & Bohr and was president and owner for many of his 55 years of service, which is today a leading distributor and representative of industrial equipment. He was a member of the American Foundry Society and the Chattanooga Engineers Club, where he served as president. Joe raised his four sons to have an engineering mindset, and all practice sound engineering principles today  in their careers.


Joe had a heart for service and was a member of many organizations, including the Chattanooga Civitan Club.  He served as an Alderman for the Town of Walden and could be seen regularly cleaning debris on the “W” and East Brow Roads. He was president of the Bachman Community Center, where he upgraded its infrastructure such as lighting and heating systems. He enjoyed volunteering in the restoration of McCoy Farm and Gardens.


He was a lifetime member of the Little Brown Church and became a trustee in 1997.  He helped in many roles including maintaining the church benches, implementing the sound system, and enjoyed singing in the choir with his brothers, Mickey (Eloise), Jim (Cathy) and Bob.


In 1973 Joe  married Genie Herman, and they raised a wonderful family.  He is  survived by Genie, their four sons, Joe Jr., Gene (Mary Catherine), Peter (Sarah), and Oliver (Joy), and their six grandchildren.  He delighted in his family and loved playing with his grandchildren: Grady, John, William, Maggie, Ila, and Frances, who affectionately called  him Papa.  


Visitation will be held on Friday, Sept. 16, from 5-7:30 p.m. at Lane Funeral Home, 601 Ashland Terrace, Chattanooga. 


Funeral services will be on Saturday, Sept. 17, at 9:30 a.m. at St. Augustine Catholic Church, 1716 Anderson Pike, Signal Mountain, Tn.  A private burial service will be held later.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to McCoy Farm and Gardens, P.O. Box 443, Signal Mountain, Tn. 37377, or Union Chapel (Little Brown Church), 345 Frazier Avenue, Suite 205, Chattanooga, Tn. 37405.


Arrangements are entrusted to Lane Funeral Home, 601 Ashland Terrace, Chattanooga, Tn. 37415,, 423 877-3524.


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