Remembering Bob Noe Haydon

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By Nick Schrager

Robert Noe “Bob” Haydon Sr., 88, a well-known businessman and community member, passed away on Feb. 23.

His son, Bobby, said Haydon lived a long life.

“I’d say he did most of what we wanted to do, if not all,” Bobby said.

Haydon joined the family business, Haydon Coal and Oil Co., which was started by Haydon’s grandfather, Charles Joseph Haydon Sr. in 1918.

“My Dad’s dad, and his brother, George and Charlie Haydon, really got it going,” Bobby said. “And then we celebrated 100 years of business last year in … May.”

Bobby recalled his late father as good role model.

“He was a great businessman,” Bobby said. “He loved sports. You know, I’d have to say he was a good father…”

He said his father was up before he and his five sisters were awake each day and didn’t come home until 6 or 6:30 at night.

On top of being a hardworking man, Haydon was known for civic duties such as starting the youth football league here and serving as past president of the Rotary Club and past president for the Kentucky Petroleum Marketing Association.

Haydon also played football for the University of Kentucky for two years under head coach Paul William (Bear) Bryant.

“And then he went into the Army,” Bobby said.

After his time was served, Haydon came home and married his wife, Martha Ann (Wilson) Haydon.

“This last year in December, we celebrated their 64th wedding anniversary,” Bobby said.

After spending nine months in Lexington, the couple returned home to start their family.

“In high school, I would work down there to make some spending money,” Bobby said. “He didn’t believe in allowances or anything. You earned your money and that was a good way to grow up.”

Jimmy Ballard assisted Haydon in starting the youth football league here.

“I can remember going with him to Aggie Sales Sports Shop in Harrodsburg,” Bobby said. “They went over and bought the football equipment: the shoulder pads, helmets, footballs, whatever, and Dad would take them to the basement and when the time came to outfit the kids everybody would come up to our basement and pick out their uniforms.”

On top of his time spent introducing children to football, Haydon could also be seen on the golf course or in Lexington.

“He was an avid golfer,” Bobby said. “He loved going to the UK football games and in the lean times he would ask us: ‘are you in or are you out of the boat?’”

Bobby said the community might remember him as a businessman and a sports enthusiast.

He recalled the last year or so helping his father out.

“I would drive him to his doctors appointments,” Bobby said. “And later on, Mom and him have a dog and we would put the dog in the backseat and we’d go riding.”

The drive usually brought them to Lebanon for lunch.

“He loved stopping over at the bank,” Bobby said, adding that his dad knew all of the people who worked there. “He knew them all and he just loved cutting up with them.”

Bobby said he really enjoyed the past year because all of the extra time he got to spend with his father.

“I know he loved his grandkids and his great grandkids,” Bobby said. “(He) liked spending time when they would come in. Taking them golfing. (I) just enjoyed being around that.”

He added that his father would want to be remembered as a loving father.

“And somebody who cared about his community,” Bobby said. “… I think he was a respected businessman in the community.”