Bob Snodgrass was a man of many talents. He got along well with the people around him and made friends with ease.
Although we don’t know a lot about Bob’s early life, we know that he earned Bachelors and Masters degrees from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO. After graduating, he moved to the San Diego area to work with a friend.
Over the next 8 years, he worked in a variety of assignments evaluating economic conditions and completing marketing studies for various interests. It was during this period that he contracted with Bill Halloran to complete a market evaluation and siting study for a rock quarry in Riverside County. This was followed by an additional assignment to obtain the necessary government agency permits to conduct mining operations. Owing to his success with these assignments, Bob joined Bill at Wyroc where he worked for the next 28 years.
At Wyroc Bob’s responsibilities grew from general regulatory compliance concerns to a host of management duties. He worked with Bill Halloran closely during the majority of this time and was eventually promoted to the position of Vice President of Operations. In this assignment, Bob was responsible for all field operations and with insuring that operations were conducted in compliance with permits and other regulatory requirements.
Bob was instrumental in convincing Bill Halloran to take a chance on National Quarries. This turned out to be a very good decision and the company profited nicely from its involvement at this site.
I met Bob in 1995, when I was charged with completing mine inspections for the City of Lake Elsinore. I found Bob to be well informed and ready to do whatever was necessary to insure that his operations were conducted in accordance with their permits. He was not intimidated by the “inspector”, but took a personal interest in me. This grew into a warm friendship that worked into a lasting relationship in life and business.
Bob was well read and didn’t scrimp on his research of important subjects. He was a well informed amateur geologist. On one of his assignments with EnviroMINE, Bob researched the location of various cinder deposits found in the southwestern U.S. This included reviewing published information and field trips to verify locations and geologic interpretations. Our client was very impressed with the results of the study and commented that he didn’t know that we had that sort of professional capability in our firm. He got well more than he had expected.
Once I met Bob and Bill at a site near Lake Elsinore where they were interested in opening a small rock quarry. The day was very warm (in the 90’s), but Bob was wearing a long sleeve shirt and a broad brimmed hat, his collar was turned up and buttoned and he had sun screen smeared all over his face. I asked him what that was all about – he wanted to make sure that he didn’t get skin cancer. We had a good laugh about that.
Bob was a committed fitness junkie and took part in many triatholons and recreational runs. He never did anything that would negatively affect his health. He said he never smoked, or drank alcohol to excess and tried to take care of his body.
Bob was very good natured and was a pleasure to be with. Over the past year or so, I got used to seeing Bob every morning. I would walk down and greet him to see what was happening in Oklahoma. He would laugh and we would talk about a variety of subjects.
Over the last 6 months of life, Bob worked with our staff to complete a project in San Bernardino County. His years of operational experience helped us to complete the project on time and within budget. He also was instrumental in training our junior staff on the nuances of the industry. Although his health was failing, Bob came to work every day and did his best. He always had something nice to say, enjoyed a good joke, and friendly banter with his coworkers.
Bob worked right up to the end. He made sure that he wasn’t leaving unfinished work for somebody else to clean up. He was a fine man, a great friend, and loyal cohort.