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In Memorium Bobbye Hall

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  • Mark Lewis
    Bobbye Hall, a former hobby industry icon, passed away at age 97 January 27 at a Dallas Hospital from congestive heart failure. This past December, at a book
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 23, 2007
      Bobbye Hall, a former hobby industry icon, passed away at age 97
      January 27 at a Dallas Hospital from congestive heart failure.

      This past December, at a book signing at the Oklahoma City Train
      Show, I was thrilled to once again talk with Bobbye Hall, who was
      signing copies of her autobiography, Tracks from Texas to Tokyo. Mrs.
      Hall owned Hall's Hobby House in Dallas from 1946 to 2002, when she
      retired. Outside of the southwest she was best known as the owner of
      Hallmark models, one of the pioneers in imported brass models in both
      HO- and N-scales.

      During her 55 years of active participation in model railroading she
      was honored by many of the support organizations, including the NMRA
      (she received the Pioneers of Model Railroading award) and the Model
      Railroad Industry Association (Inducted into their Hall of Fame). She
      was the first woman elected to the Hobby Industry Associations board
      of directors (1953).

      I first became one of her customers during a trip to Dallas to visit
      my then-wife's parents. Frequently over the 70s, and less frequently
      in the 80s and early 90s, I spent many hours in the building in east
      Dallas, most of them chatting with Mrs. Hall. If she didn't have
      something, she knew where to get it. I once took a competitor's brass
      loco into her shop because I lost a tiny part and needed a
      replacement. She took the model up to the Hallmark offices to try to
      find something that would fit. She returned with the model after
      about 20 minutes and told me the they had nothing suitable to replace
      the missing piece, but that the original importer was mailing me the
      part I needed. It was that kind of dedication to the hobby and to her
      customers that made Bobbye Hall very special.

      ===========
      Mark Lewis
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