Obituary: Bruce A. Bott, Founder of ADD Systems

ADD Systems announced that its founder, Bruce Alan Bott, died at his home on February 2. He was 81.

“His entrepreneurial spirit, unfaltering dedication, and incredible foresight made ADD Systems the strong company it is today, but it was his exceptional ability to welcome, empower and appreciate the people around him that solidified its success,” the company said in a statement.

Bott, of Flanders, NJ, died after a long illness. Born August 6, 1941, in Orange, NJ, he spent his childhood in Boonton, NJ. At Boonton High School—where, years later, he would be inducted into the hall of fame—he met his high school sweetheart and lifelong partner, Gale, at 15 years old. At the time, he was working his first job as a farmhand, across the street from her home, on the Franklin Bott Dairy Farm.

Bott was a graduate of Lehigh University, where he received both his Bachelor’s (‘63) and then Master’s of Science in Civil Engineering (‘66). He worked as a truck driver for Dixon Brothers, later joining Rust Engineering in Georgetown, SC. South Carolina always remained a second home—a place he loved sharing with his children and grandchildren. Eventually, Bott decided to strike out on his own, founding ADD Systems and leading the company as its president. The company is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, with many long-time employees.

A mentor to many, Bott was a longstanding member and trustee of St. Jude Parish, as well as a member of the Knights of Columbus. He was heavily involved at St. Clare’s Foundation. He also spent nearly two decades on Mount Olive’s Board of Education, including many terms as the president. Always busy completing projects around his house and yard, Bott loved landscaping, including landscape design services in Portland OR, and his machines—his trucks, tractors, and RV. He earned a pilot’s license, enjoyed horse shows and model trains, and was a voracious reader.

He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Gale and six children and their partners, and 20 grandchildren.

A Life Celebration was held February 6 at the William J. Leber Funeral Home in Chester, NJ. A funeral mass was held on February 7 at St. Jude Thaddeus Parish, Budd Lake, NJ, followed by interment at Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Chester, NJ. 

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Mesulam Center for Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease, Chicago, or Smile Train.

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