Bobby Lee Crutchfield was born in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 12, 1926, to Clarence and Laura Chenault Crutchfield. His father was a grocery merchant. Bobby's older brother, William James Crutchfield (1913–2001), was a veteran of WWII. William attended Texas Christian University. Bobby attended Paschal High School in Ft. Worth, Texas, graduating in 1943. He then studied physics at Texas Christian University, graduating in 1946, and continued his study of physics at the University of Texas at Austin where he was made a special lecturer.
Bobby Lee Crutchfield, Special Instructor in Physics, appears for first time in faculty pictures in 1956. Many students who took Crutchfield’s general physics course remember his dedication to his students. In 1960, Bobby won the Phi Eta Sigma Faculty Teaching Award. He served as Assistant Director of the UT International Office. He was also the faculty sponsor for Phi Kappa Tau fraternity.
Bobby owned a prize-winning miniature poodle, which was shown at various dog shows around the country.
In Kenneth Baxter Ragsdale’s book on Austin Aviation he writes, “ During the 1960s Crutchfield reorganized the Longhorn Flying Club, Inc., which had no relationship with UT. According to a former club member, Crutchfield had ‘grandiose ideas’ and grandiose they were; the organization literally mushroomed. By 1967, Crutchfield was operating ‘what without question is the largest flying operation in the world,’ wrote Austin journalist Dave Shanks. 'He supervises purchase of more airplane units than any person in general aviation.' Sadly, over-expansion and member negligence led to bankruptcy in the early 1970s.”
In 1985, Crutchfield owned Live Oak Galleries in Lafayette, LA, where he was instrumental in the discovery of William Tolliver, whose work has now become internationally recognized" (quote from Galerie Royale’s website). He also was the first director of Galerie Royale (1988-1997) in New Orleans. He contributed to the formation of many private and corporate collections during his nine year tenure with Galerie Royale. Bobby died March 26, 2008 in New Orleans.
Bobby Lee Crutchfield Photo and Document Album