Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Longtime Tuscaloosa Businessman Bob Almon Dies at 81

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Longtime Tuscaloosa Businessman Bob Almon Dies at 81

Article excerpt

From the building of Lake Tuscaloosa to revitalizing the city's downtown, civil engineer Robert N. Almon Sr. helped change the face Tuscaloosa.

The founder and longtime head of the engineering firm Almon & Associates, Almon also planned and help implement the city's first sewage collection system, the widening of 15th Street from a two- lane street to a six-lane thoroughfare and the Tuscaloosa Riverwalk during a career that spanned decades.

Almon died Wednesday at DCH Regional Medical Center. He was 81 years old.

"He will be remembered as one of the builders of the community," said Dr. Everett Hale, a longtime friend and frequent hunting companion. "He always looked at what was best for the city and the county."

Former Tuscaloosa Mayor Al Dupont said got to know Almon at the University of Alabama, where both men earned engineering degrees. Dupont, who was the city's planning director before he became mayor, described Almon as "a real good friend and always a straight shooter.

"I always felt real comfortable working with him," Dupont said. "He added a lot to this community."

Another longtime friend and hunting buddy, businessman Gary Fitts, said the transformation of downtown to what it is today reflects much of Almon's work and vision.

"He was an engineer through and through," Fitts said.

But Fitts said he also remembered the times he, Almon and other friends hunted and stayed at a cabin they built at Cook's Bend Duck Camp along the Tombigbee River.

"We hunted ducks down there. We were down there every weekend during duck season," Fitts said.

The hunting was a hobby, but Tuscaloosa was his passion, those who knew Almon said.

"Growing up in his house, there were hundreds of times when he mentioned the needs of this community," said Almon's son, Robert N. Almon Jr.

"He had the sincerest love this community. ...There was this commitment to the community, the nation and his family that he had. He didn't have to preach it; he lived it," the younger Almond said. "I loved that about my father. He was always an inspiration to people."

He said his father often met with U. …

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