Colonel Robert Taylor (Bob) Agee, Jr., U. S. Army (Retired), died on Monday, August 24, 2020 at the age of 85. He was the only child of the late Robert Taylor Agee, Sr. and the late Willene Eloise Faith Agee. He was also preceded in death by his high school sweetheart and loving wife of 55 years, Ruenell Helen Griffin Agee, on June 4, 2014.
Bob was born in Calhoun, Georgia on March 16, 1935. He attended school in the Calhoun City School System. He graduated from Calhoun High School as Salutatorian in 1953. While at Calhoun High School, he lettered in three sports (football, baseball, and track) for three years. He was selected All-State Quarterback on the 1952 State Championship Football team.
His father died in the summer of 1953. To continue his civilian education, Bob obtained employment with the Lockheed Aircraft Company in Marietta in its "Co-op Program" and alternated his college studies with his work at Lockheed. As a result, he obtained a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Electrical Engineering from Auburn University in 1958. While at Auburn, he also received a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army via its ROTC program. Later, while on active duty, the U.S. Army elected to further his formal education by sending him to Georgia Tech where he acquired Master of Science (MS) degrees in both Electrical Engineering (1970) and in Industrial Management (1975). Colonel Agee also graduated from the Armed Forces Staff College, Command and General Staff College, Army War College and the Defense Systems Management College during his time on active duty.
As a Career Army Officer, Colonel Agee served 10 years in the Georgia Army National Guard and 26 years on active duty for a total of 36 years of dedicated military service to his country. His active duty time consisted mostly of high-level staff assignments in Washington, DC, and technical management assignments at Fort Meade, Maryland and Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. His tours overseas were in Germany, South Vietnam and Korea.
Colonel Agee's most challenging jobs in the military were as: (1) Chief, Communications-Electronics (C-E) Division, Eighth Army G-4, where he was responsible for the engineering and related contract support for all C-E projects in South Korea; (2) Project Manager, U. S. Army Satellite Communications Agency at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, where he shared management responsibility for the development, engineering and contract support for all U.S. military satellite equipment and systems. In this position, he also served as Chairman for NATO Sub Group Eight which was a panel responsible for joint development of common satellite communications systems for NATO. This panel consisted of voting members representing seven different countries, and (3) Chief, Tactical Intelligence Systems, National Security Agency (NSA), where he managed the research, development, engineering and fielding support of all tactical intelligence equipment and systems for all four military services (i.e., the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps). Colonel Agee held this brigadier general position (as a Colonel) for five years from 1984 to 1989 before retiring in 1989. His overall responsibilities in this final military assignment included the direct management and supervision of 125 highly technical civilian/military personnel and staff, a $20 million R&D budget and a $120 million acquisition budget.
His military decorations and awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal Joint Service Commendation Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (19 Oak Leaf Cluster), National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal Vietnam Service Medal Vietnam Cross of Gallantry (Unit Citation), Vietnam Campaign Medal, Parachute Badge, and the Army Service Ribbon.
Early in his military career, Bob decided to return to civilian life and was employed with Lockheed in Marietta where he reached the position of Senior Aircraft Design Engineer in less than three years. He resigned in 1966 to volunteer for Vietnam and ended up remaining in military service for a total of 36 years. In late 1987, he was involved in a life- threatening automobile accident which forced him into an extended period of convalescence (ten months) without working and medical retirement in 1989. He and his family remained at their home in Lake Ridge, Virginia where he found civilian employment in the Washington D.C. Area, first as a communications consultant with the Booz-Allen & Hamilton Company and then as Vice President, Communications with the Advanced Communications System (ACS) Company, Inc.
In 1992, Bob and Ruenell decided to return to their hometown of Calhoun from Virginia to take care of their elderly relatives, moving back to Calhoun the following year. Ruenell assumed caregiver responsibilities for her mother and older brother until their passing. Bob did the same for his mother until she died in 1999. When Ruenell became seriously ill in 2008, he served as her primary caregiver until her death in 2014.
Upon coming back to Calhoun, he initially became heavily involved in community affairs. He served as President of the Calhoun Rotary Club. He was a past Board Member of the Calhoun-Gordon County Library Board as well as the Northwest Georgia Regional Library Board of Trustees. He ran in two State Senate races. He was a life-time member of both the local VFW Post 5376 and American Legion Post 47 organizations. He was a past Deacon Chairman, Lake Ridge Baptist Church, Lake Ridge, Virginia before becoming an ordained deacon at the First Baptist Church in Calhoun.
His survivors include three daughters: Melanie (Mark) Gursky of Woodbridge, Virginia; Sharyn (Kristen) Agee of Fairfax, Virginia; and Laurie (Sean) Rubino of Acworth, Georgia. Additional survivors who brought great joy to him include five grandchildren: Stacy Gursky and Tyler Gursky, both of Woodbridge, Virginia; Jordan Ezzell-Agee, Fairfax, Virginia; and Aidan Rubino and DecIan Rubino, both of Acworth, Georgia.
Funeral Services will be conducted on Friday, August 28, 2020 at 2 p.m. at Thomas Funeral Home of Calhoun with Dr. John Barber officiating. Interment will follow at Fain Cemetery with full military honors. Pallbearers will be members of the Fort Benning, Georgia U.S. Army Honor Guard. Honorary pallbearers are Tyler Gursky, Billy Baxter, Dr. Paul LeBlanc, Dr. Julia Rittenhouse, Dr. James Turner, Jimmy Prater, Ron Hall, Jimmy Silvers, Bruce Thomas, Jack McDaniel, Fred Prater, Sean Rubino, Mark Gursky, George Chapman, Tim Haney, Jim Mathews, and Wayne McEntyre. Additional pallbearers are Colonel Agee's caregivers at Care at Home with special recognition to Leslie DePerro, Holly Chamblee, Linda Church, Darlene Arguello; surviving members of the Calhoun High School Graduating Class of 1953; and surviving members of the Calhoun High School 1952 State Championship Football Team.
The family will receive guests on Thursday, August 27, 2020 from 5p.m. until 7 p.m. at the chapel of Thomas Funeral Home. The family requests that guests respect CDC guidelines regarding social distancing and wearing of masks as to protect our loved ones and others who are fighting terminal illnesses.
Online condolences may be expressed and the guest book signed at www.thomasfuneralhomecalhoun.com
Thomas Funeral Home has proudly been entrusted with the care of Colonel Robert Taylor “Bob” Agee, Jr. U.S. Army (Retired).
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