Charles Konrad

KONRAD, Charles Edward “Bud,” 80, of Roanoke passed away on Friday, January 10, at his residence, after an illness of several years.

Bud, (a.k.a. “Dr. Bud,” “Poppin’ Bud,” or Grandpa Bud) was born on April 10, 1933, a son of the late George Fredrick and Mary Veronica Taylor Konrad.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Karen Batson Konrad, his four children, Charles “Chip” (Leslie) Konrad, Ph.D, Kurt Konrad, Kristen (Butch) Johnstone, JD, and Christopher (Christina) Konrad, five grandchildren, Katie, Zachary, and Carey Konrad, and Kirin and Ian Johnstone, his sisters, Patricia Workman, Mary Lynn (Frank) Chesnik, and Suzanne (John) Farhatt as well as several nieces and nephews and many friends.

After graduating high school at Magnolia High School, New Martinsville, WV, Bud served in the U.S. Army for over three years, learning all the while. Dr. Bud graduated from West Virginia University with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and later earned masters and doctorate degrees from Virginia Tech. He worked for General Electric for 37 years, retiring in 1998.

Always a source of encouragement for young engineers, Dr. Bud was a gifted teacher, instructing Virginia Tech and University of Virginia students in electrical engineering graduate courses. The crowning achievement of his career had to be receiving the Steinmetz award in 1985, which was granted by G.E. to leading engineers and scientists in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the company and society. The award included trips to Fairfield, Connecticut and New York City, shares of G.E. Stock, a silver medal, his name on a plaque at corporate headquarters, and a $10,000 contribution, in his name, to the college of his choice, (Bud chose Virginia Tech) for the furtherance of education in engineering.

In addition to his many academic and career achievements, Bud considered his finest achievement to be his and Karen’s children and grandchildren.

As a father and grandpa Bud delighted in watching all of their sporting events, (sometimes he and Karen would have to split up, not for ever, but just to be present when there were games at different places at the same time, which happened frequently). Then there were the sessions at the kitchen table when one of the urchins would need some coaching in math which of course Dad excelled in and which was not always the “favored” subject of said urchins. According to reports, the lesson usually started with the history of math by the father and lots of eye rolling by the one wanting to “get all the answers” as rapidly as possible. Dr. Bud was special in so many ways. He was, indeed, quite a guy. He was an active member of St. James Episcopal Church, in Roanoke, Bud served as senior warden several times, as well as junior warden, treasurer, chair of several committees, faithful choir member, Sunday school teacher, and genuine role model. He was the “real deal” and will be greatly missed.

Flowers are appreciated or donations may be made to a fund established in his name at St. James Episcopal Church.

A memorial service will be conducted 11 a.m. Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at St. James Episcopal Church 4515 Delray Street NW Roanoke, Va. 24012 by the Rev. Susan Bentley. The family will receive friends from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Tuesday at Simpson Funeral Home 5160 Peters Creek Road. 366-0707.