Former Pineville mayor dies

Published 9:27 am Monday, January 29, 2018

Longtime Pineville political figure and community proponent Robert L. Madon died Sunday at the Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center. He was 83.

Madon, known as “Bob” and “Bobby” to most throughout his life, was known in the region for his lifelong passion, efforts, and dedication toward the prosperity of his hometown.

He graduated from Pineville High School in 1953 and attended Millersburg Military Institute, becoming a veteran of the U.S. Air Force in the Korean conflict. He also attended Eastern Kentucky University, Union and Cumberland Colleges. He was a member of the First Baptist Church of Pineville, sang in the church choir and served as associate Sunday school superintendent.

Madon deeply loved Pineville and spent his life sincerely involved in the town as well as all of Bell County. He was president of the Pineville Jaycees, a charter member of the Pineville Athletic Boosters Club and a member of the Bennett Asher, Post 10 American Legion and the Dewey Guy, Post 14 in Pineville and Middlesboro. His public service role extended beyond Pineville mayoral duties as he served as president of the Kentucky League of Cities and as a KLC director from 1979 to 2008.

Maintaining professional roles that allowed him to be a voice for his community, he spent over a decade as general manager of the Pineville Sun-Cumberland Courier and General Manager of WANO Radio. He later managed the Cumberland Trading Post, WFXY Radio and WXJB Radio. Madon loved sports and after becoming the voice of the Pineville Mountain Lions he later became a KHSAA basketball official who officiated many games and state tournaments for both boys’ and girls’ basketball.

His political career began in 1968 when newly-elected Republican Governor Louie B. Nunn asked him to come to Frankfort to serve as his administrative assistant. In 1971, he was named to the Pineville City Council to fill a vacancy and served until 1974. In 1974, he was named city judge and served until he was elected mayor in 1977. Madon spearheaded the effort behind many improvements to the city and served on the Flood Related Projects Committee following the devastating flood of April 4, 1977. He procured millions of dollars after the flood that assisted in the construction of the floodwall and the US 25E Bypass around Pineville that now bears his name.

In true Pineville tradition, Madon spent his life greatly involved with the Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival. He was general chairman in 1966 and general co-chairman in 1973. He served as MC for the Princess and Queen Pageants for many years and on the Advisory Board from 1967-1972. Bob held much pride for his 1995 KMLF Hall of Fame, 1999 Outstanding Service and 2005 Lifetime Honorary Director awards.

He is survived by several children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. His son Scott now serves as Pineville’s mayor.

“Bob’s legacy is richly interwoven in all that is Pineville, and his spirit endures with family, friends, and in every progression and proud tradition as we continue to rise, just as he faithfully believed and foretold,” states his obituary.

Arnett & Steele Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. A full obituary can be found inside.