Timothy W. Crowder, a University of Richmond boiler plant operator of 21 years — who is remembered by his family, friends and colleagues for his commitment and kind spirit — died on Jan. 16, according to a Jan. 20 email sent to UR students, faculty and staff.
“His passing was a shock to us all, and he will be greatly missed,” Boiler Plant Supervisor Jesse Forbes said. “Due to the nature of the job I feel it has made my employees very close to each other, I think of them as extended family.”
According to Forbes, Crowder was in charge of the night shift that spanned from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. the next morning. It was not unusual for Crowder to either arrive at work early or stay after in order to catch up with Forbes and other coworkers.
“He was very dedicated to the University and the plant, often volunteering to fill empty positions whenever needed,” Forbes said. “I always knew I could count on him to do whatever was needed to help keep the plant up and going.”
The boiler plant is made up of 10 employees who keep it running 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Their work is to provide steam to UR’s campus, maintain the steam tunnels and mechanical equipment in buildings and administer emergency assistance if requested after hours, Forbes said.
Outside of his work for the University, Crowder was also a supporter of UR sports.
“He was a fan of Spider athletics and would enjoy discussing what was happening with them,” Forbes said.
University Chaplain Craig T. Kocher informed students of Crowder’s passing through an email sent out on Jan. 20.
“Tim was a beloved colleague and will be dearly missed by the University of Richmond community, and we extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends and all who knew him,” he wrote.
A celebration of Crowder’s life was held on Feb. 7 at the Victoria Church of the Nazarene Kocher wrote in another updating email sent out on Feb. 1.
Contact news writer Liv Ronca at email@example.com.
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