Clayton, NC /Big Stone Gap, VA - Bobby Nelson Powers, 85, of Clayton NC, passed away peacefully on Wednesday morning, February 28, 2018, after several years of declining health. He was born at home in Big Stone Gap Virginia to the late Gertrude Wells Powers Huff and James Isaac Powers. He graduated from Big Stone Gap High School in 1951, and immediately began a four year hitch in the United States Air Force. As an Air Force motion picture photographer, his duty stations and assignments included Denver, Colorado, Hollywood and Burbank California, Keflavik Iceland, and Cameron Station, Alexandria Virginia. During a filming assignment in Washington D.C. he saw a buddy from “back home” in his movie camera view finder. That chance meeting with Lonzo, resulted in him calling Naomi Hamilton, also from Big Stone Gap, who was working for the Federal Government in D.C. Bob and Naomi began dating, and they married soon thereafter on December 31, 1954 at the home of Richard and Charmie Hamilton, Powell Valley, Big Stone Gap, Va.
The day after his honorable discharge from the U.S. Air Force, he began a 35 year career with the Federal Government, Defense Printing office in Washington D.C. His assignments during this career working with microfilm and microfiche, included offices in the Pentagon, and the Washington Navy Yard. He was always proud of the fact that he was an operator on Xerox photocopy machines serial #1 and serial #2. He also worked part time, and then full time for over 30 years with Balmar Printing in Arlington, Va.
He moved his growing family first from Alexandria, VA., then to Falls Church, and finally to the new development of Sterling Park, VA in September 1963, where they lived until moving to Clayton, North Carolina in 2007. He continued his talents with a movie camera from his Air Force days to record many family events over the years, and shared them generously at every opportunity.
Bobby is survived by his wife of 63 years, Naomi Powers, his daughter Diane Powers and husband Cosmo of Largo FL., sons Marc Powers of Clayton, NC, Steve Powers and wife QuiMei of Stafford, VA., Andrew Powers and wife Rachele of Brownsburg, IN. He is also survived by his grandchildren; Shirrin, Matthew, Cheryl, Shannon, Charmie, AJ, and Brandon, and greatgrandchildren; Brady, Teagan, Gage, Misty and Aiden.
Also surviving are his sister Mattie Belle Davidson, and brothers Gary Dean Powers and Danny Earl Powers all of Big Stone Gap Va., and many dozens of nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Viewing and visitation will be held at Gilliam Funeral Home, Big Stone Gap, VA. Sunday afternoon, March 4, 2018, from 1:00pm to 3:00pm. Funeral services will follow in the funeral home chapel.
He will be laid to rest in Powell Valley Memorial Gardens, Big Stone Gap on Monday morning at 10:00am. Family and friends are asked to assemble at Gilliam Funeral Home to leave in procession at 9:30am.
Gilliam Funeral Home and Crematory is honored to serve the family of Bobby Nelson Powers.
618 Wood Ave. West
Big Stone Gap, VA 24219