Russell Badgett Jr. ’40 of Madisonville, Ky., died March 8, 2012. Russell was born in Wabbaseka, Ark., in 1918, and received the Silver Beaver Award as an Eagle Scout for distinguished service as a council leader. At Mines, he earned a professional degree in mining engineering, and was a member of Blue Key and, later, the President’s Council. Russell served as a naval aviator in the South Pacific as a second lieutenant from March 1942 until November 1945.
For more than 50 years, Russell owned and operated a mine in western Kentucky. With his two brothers, he pioneered surface mining with the use of drag lines through Badgett Mine Stripping, and later formed Russell Badgett Jr. Coal Co. and Sextet Mining Corp. He was a member of the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers. In addition to being the owner and chairman of Hancock Bank and Trust, Russell was a 33-year cancer survivor. His wife, Juanita, and infant son, Roy, preceded him in death. He is survived by six children, including Bentley Badgett II ’74; 16 grandchildren; and 16 great-grandchildren.