Former journalist, PR veteran, Automotive News staff member Dick Plumb dies at 97

Charles R. “Dick” Plumb, who headed public relations for Rockwell International’s automotive unit for additional than two a long time, died peacefully at his house in South Carolina on May well 8. He was 97.

Early in his profession, Plumb worked as a reporter and editor for many smaller every day and weekly newspapers in Michigan, together with The Michigan Day-to-day, Huron County Tribune and South Macomb Information. He then joined the Detroit No cost Push, the place he held many editorial roles, together with duplicate editor and make-up editor.

In 1963, Plumb joined Automotive Information as a staff members reporter and editor. He later on served as director of marketing and advertising for the publication.

Plumb transitioned to company communications in 1969 when he was hired by Rockwell Global and discovered his correct professional contacting. He finally grew to become director of communications for Rockwell’s light motor vehicle factors enterprise (subsequently procured by Meritor, which now is currently being acquired by Cummins).

Plumb was the consummate, outdated university PR male acknowledged for his memorable press excursions — together with annual Indy 500 outings — and constructing extensive-lasting relationships with journalists, a lot of of whom turned lifelong pals.

“I very first achieved Dick when he was a staffer at Automotive Information and I was business editor of the Cost-free Push sometime throughout the 1960s. Not very long just after Dick built the leap to PR with Rockwell, which is exactly where I obtained to know him well.” said longtime Detroit automotive journalist Dave Smith. “I usually imagined he was amid the most effective among the the scores of automotive PR people I labored with: intelligent, enthusiastic, really proficient and a gentleman who never strayed far too much from his journalism roots.”

Plumb was born in Yates Center, Kan., in 1924. He satisfied his foreseeable future wife Juanita in higher college, wherever they performed the romantic leads in a faculty participate in and worked on the university newspaper together. They celebrated their 76th anniversary very last 12 months.

Right after setting up school at the University of Kansas, Plumb enlisted in the U.S. Navy as part of the V-12 College or university Training program for the duration of Earth War II. Soon after the war, he attained a bachelor’s degree in journalism and an MBA from the University of Michigan.

In addition to Juanita, Plumb is survived by young children Chris (Torres), Rick, Kim (Cahill) and Steve sons-in-law Mark Torres and Bob Cahill and grandchildren Laura, Evan, Danielle and Addison.

Katherine T. Burrows

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