In Jan. 14 IssueBy Derek AaronTimes Journal Reporter
Veston "Bocky" Bottom, a beloved former mayor of Russell Springs, passed away last week after a lengthy illness and sent a community he cherished into mourning.
Bottom, 81, died last Wednesday at Russell County Hospital.
"He gave everything he had to the city," said Russell Springs Mayor Hollis DeHart. "He loved this town and devoted himself to it."
DeHart, who served as a councilman in the 70s while Bottoms was mayor, said he would miss seeing Bottom around town and would miss getting the advice Bottom had given him through the years.
"In my opinion, there has never been, nor will there ever be, a better mayor than "Bocky" Bottom," DeHart said.
Russell Springs Volunteer Fire Department Chief H.M. Bottom, a cousin to Bottom, said the two were extremely close friends as well.
"We worked together in matters all the way back to April 1975 when he swore me in as fire chief while he was mayor," Bottom said.
"We were so closely connected, almost like brothers, that we never had disagreements and respected each others' decisions," he said. "He was always very supportive."
Bottom said the two depended on each other for advice, much like DeHart.
"I really miss him and I'm going to miss the advice," he said.
Bottom said even after "Bocky" retired the two would meet for coffee almost every morning.
"He was a very brilliant individual," Bottom said. "I watched him as he applied for grants for the city and he is the reason we have many of the things we do now."
As a former mayor, Bottom served served seven years at the city's top spot, from the late 1960's through the mid-1970's and served eight years as a councilman or commissioner in the city's government.
He is widely credited in Russell Springs becoming an All Kentucky City back in 1974 and played a major role in the establishment of the Russell Springs City Park.
Earlier in his life Bottom was a salesman for Monroe Auto Equipment and he was a veteran of the United States Navy and Air Force.
Bottom was also a past master of the Russell Springs Masonic Lodge #941 and a member of the Disabled American Veterans.
Showing his desire as a civic leader, Bottom also served as chairman of the Lake Cumberland Area Development District and the Lake Cumberland Transit Agency during his lifetime.
He was also a well-loved member of the Royville Friendship Church.
Bottom's funeral was this past Sunday at Bernard Funeral Home Chapel. Rev. Carroll Egnew was the officiating clergy with special music by Rita Curry.
Pallbearers were Joel Wolford, Eric Wolford, Stephen Bottom, Miles Bottom, Kevin Holt and Rex Eads.
Honorary pallbearers were Wayne Curry, Charles Blankenship, H.M. Bottom, Jerry Holt and Chris Stapp.
Bottom was born November 11, 1928, the son of the late Tressie Anderson Bottom and Bert Bottom.
He is survived by his wife, Joann Cape Bottom, a daughter, Sherry Daniel, two grandchildren, Rachel Daniel and Adam Daniel, two brothers, Raymond Bottom of Mississippi and Billy Bottom of Lexington as well as two sisters, Jeanette Wolford, and Janis Holt, both of Russell Springs.
Bernard Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements with burial in the Bethlehem Cemetery.
The family requests memorials to Veston "Bocky" Bottom be made to Gideons International, an extended missionary arm of the church and the oldest Christian business and professional men's association in the country.