Robert Isaac Dal­ton, Jr.

The Charlotte Observer (Sunday) - - Obituaries -


CHAR­LOTTE - Robert I. Dal­ton Jr., a na­tive and long­time res­i­dent of Char­lotte, died on Feb­ru­ary

28, 2019, one month be­fore his 98th birth­day.

Mr. Dal­ton was born on April 2, 1921, to Robert I. Dal­ton and Edith Gos­sett Dal­ton. He at­tended Char­lotte pub­lic schools and McCal­lie School in Chat­tanooga, Ten­nessee, be­fore go­ing on to North Carolina State Col­lege, where he ob­tained his B. S. de­gree in Tex­tile Man­u­fac­tur­ing. Upon grad­u­a­tion from N. C. State, he en­listed in the U.S. Army and later re­ceived his com­mis­sion as a Sec­ond Lieu­tenant from the In­fantry School at Fort Ben­ning, Ge­or­gia. There­after, he served in Europe dur­ing World War II with the Eighth In­fantry Divi­sion, and was wounded in the as­sault on Brest, France, re­ceiv­ing a Pur­ple Heart and Bronze Star. Fol­low­ing re­cu­per­a­tion in Eng­land, he was sent back to France, where he was as­signed to the 29th In­fantry Reg­i­ment. At war’s end, he was serv­ing as Cap­tain Ad­ju­tant of the reg­i­ment. More re­cently, he was awarded the French Le­gion of Honor, the most pres­ti­gious dec­o­ra­tion awarded by the gov­ern­ment of France.

Fol­low­ing the war, he went to work with the R& D De­part­ment of Whitin Ma­chine Works, where he worked with a team de­vel­op­ing a new, cost- sav­ing sys­tem for the spin­ning of worsted yarns. The sys­tem be­came pop­u­larly known as the “Amer­i­can Sys­tem,” which re­placed the out­moded and costly French sys­tem of spin­ning. He later was trans­ferred to the sales de­part­ment and rose to be­come Vice-Pres­i­dent of Do­mes­tic and Cana­dian Sales, a po­si­tion he held from 1958 to 1967. This pro­mo­tion re­sulted in mov­ing his fam­ily to South­bor­ough, Mass­a­chu­setts, for 4 years.

AfterWhitin was sold to Whitin Con­sol­i­dated of Cleve­land, Ohio, he was named Pres­i­dent and CEO of Cock­erMa­chine & Foundry Co. of Gas­to­nia, where he served from 1967 to 1970. When Cocker was sold to Bar­ber- Cole­man Co. of Rock­ford, Illi­nois, he or­ga­nized his own firm, Tech-Tex Inc in June 1967, a firm en­gaged in mar­ket con­sult­ing and merg­ers in the tex­tile in­dus­try, both do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional. Dur­ing his busi­ness ca­reer, he served as a Direc­tor of Carl­ton YarnMills, Globe Mills Co., Platt Saco Lowell, Pyra­mid Life In­sur­ance Co., Cad­mus Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Amer­i­can Truet­zschler, a Ger­man- owned tex­tile ma­chine com­pany with head­quar­ters in Char­lotte. He also served as Direc­tor of the Amer­i­can Tex­tile Man­u­fac­tur­ing As­so­ci­a­tion, and for 32 years, he served as a Direc­tor of the Char­lotte Board of NCNB, pre­de­ces­sor of Bank of Amer­ica.

His long life was a re­flec­tion of the devel­op­ment and ex­pan­sion of Char­lotte. He was born in Fourth Ward, grew up in­My­ers Park, raised his fam­ily on Sardis Road, then Char­lotte farm land, be­fore re­tir­ing to a home in Eas­tover. This broad fa­mil­iar­ity and sense of place fos­tered a life- long ded­i­ca­tion to sup­port­ing and im­prov­ing his com­mu­nity. He was past pres­i­dent of the Char­lotte Sym­phony Or­ches­tra, the Char­lotte Tex­tile Club, the Char­lotte City Club, Friends of UNC- C and the Pied­mont Club. He was a past direc­tor of the Arts & Science Coun­cil, Spirit Square, Meck­len­burg Chap­ter of the Amer­i­can Red Cross, Com­mu­ni­ties-in- Schools and the Good Fel­lows Club. In 1957-58 he served as a mem­ber of the Char­lotte/ Meck­len­burg Board of Ed­u­ca­tion when the school sys­tem be­gan tak­ing its first steps to­ward in­te­gra­tion. He was also a mem­ber of the Char­lotte Coun­try Club. While his civic in­volve­ment was pub­lic, he was also sen­si­tive to the dis­ad­van­taged, pro­vid­ing pri­vate sup­port to those in need. A for­ward thinker and en­gaged cit­i­zen, he de­voted his life to im­prov­ing the cul­tural and eco­nomic well- be­ing of the city he loved.

A mem­ber of My­ers Park Unit­edMethodist Church, a church his par­ents helped to es­tab­lish in 1925, he had served as Chair­man of the Fi­nance Com­mit­tee, Chair­man of the Ad­min­is­tra­tive Board, Lay Leader, a Stephen Min­is­ter and a Teacher of the Luther Sny­der Bible Class for 25 years.

Beyond Char­lotte, he served as Chair­man of the Board of Trus­tees of Bre­vard Col­lege and sub­se­quently of the Bre­vard Mu­sic Cen­ter, an ac­claimed sum­mer in­sti­tute ded­i­cated to in­struct­ing gifted young stu­dents in var­i­ous dis­ci­plines of clas­si­cal mu­sic.

He was a mem­ber of the Board of Overseers at Duke Com­pre­hen­sive Can­cer Cen­ter and the Mu­seum of Tex­tile Amer­i­can His­tory of Lowell, Mass.

For all of his suc­cess, Bob Dal­ton un­der­stood that life’s great­est riches came from fam­ily and friends. Funlov­ing and ad­ven­tur­ous, he was his grand­chil­dren’s best friend, al­ways at the ready to fly a kite, teach them how to wa­ter­ski, or tell a thrilling story. He cher­ished the trips he took with his beloved wife, Gwin, and other loved ones. Cu­ri­ous about the world, he trav­eled to over 70 coun­tries. Fas­ci­nated by boats and planes, he loved to char­ter a sail­boat or travel by the Con­corde or even a Piper Cub. Wish­ing to share his love of travel, he and Gwin took each grand­child, in­di­vid­u­ally, to Dis­ney World when they turned 5, to New York at age 10 and on a for­eign trip of their choice at age 16. They loved fam­ily va­ca­tions at their home in North Litch­field Beach, South Carolina, where loved ones from near and far gath­ered to be to­gether. They were proud of the home they built off Wen­dover Road and were al­ways ea­ger to wel­come guests. Hav­ing sur­vived can­cer, he ap­pre­ci­ated the im­por­tance of stay­ing fit - swim­ming laps, play­ing ten­nis and walk­ing their dog, Duke. With a warm word for every­one and a shock of hair that looked so dig­ni­fied when it fi­nally turned white, Bob Dal­ton cut a dash­ing fig­ure across Char­lotte. He was an en­er­getic and ex­cit­ing man whose pres­ence and im­pact moved us to smile.

He is sur­vived by his wife, Gwin Barn­well Dal­ton; daugh­ters Mil­lie Cox and her hus­band Tom of Char­lotte and Dede Caugh­man and her hus­band Jimmy of Wash­ing­ton DC; five grand­chil­dren - Liza Cox of Char­lotte, Miles Cox (Re­becca) of Lon­don, Eng­land, and Dr. Dal­ton Cox (Ash­ley) of Char­lotte, Lau­ren Caugh­man Rohrer (Ivon III) of Char­lotte and Betsy Caugh­man (Greg) of Char­lotte; great- grand­chil­dren James Dal­ton Blinn, Gwin Harper Blinn, Bode Baker Blinn, Thomas Wilder Cox, Cather­ine Wy­att Cox - all of Char­lotte and by Si­enna Gwin Char­lotte Cox and Xan­the Rose Eliz­a­beth Cox of Lon­don. He is also sur­vived by three brothers - James Dal­ton of At­lanta, Ru­fus Dal­ton of Char­lotte and Harry Dal­ton (Kathy) of Rock Hill SC.

- and sis­ter Sally Robin­son (Rus­sell) of Char­lotte.

A me­mo­rial ser­vice will be held at My­ers Park United Methodist Church, at 2: 00 PM Tues­day March 5, 2019, pre­ceded by grave­side ser­vices for the fam­ily at For­est Lawn West Ceme­tery. The fam­ily will re­ceive friends in Ju­bilee Hall at the Church fol­low­ing the me­mo­rial ser­vice.

Memo­ri­als may be sent to My­ers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road, Char­lotte NC, 28207

Ar­range­ments are in the care of Ken­neth Poe Fu­neral & Cre­ma­tion Ser­vice, 1321 Berke­ley Ave., Char­lotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. On­line con­do­lences can be shared atwww. ken­neth poe ser­vices. com.

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