Chris Bottomley Dedicates Life, Work On EE To Son

Posted by · May 31, 2012 2:50 pm

From left: Richard Bottomley, his sister Claire and his father, EE Expert Chris Bottomley in happier times.

Depending on how quickly you need an answer, interacting with other Experts Exchange members often leaves little time for small talk.  So, unless you spend time in the Lounge or one of the community –based threads, you probably don’t know what’s going on in the lives of the Experts who selflessly volunteer their time to answer questions and solve problems on Experts Exchange.

For tech genius Chris Bottomley, the story behind the EEple is a painful one.  In 2008, Chris lost his 21-year-old son Richard to suicide.  Since then, Chris and his wife of 29 years, Janet have dedicated their lives to honoring their son’s memory, helping others cope with the loss of a child and working to prevent young adult suicide.

“Jan and I are trying to help others who have lost a child and are in the same, unfortunate position as us.  We have three projects with which we are involved. We’re members of the Remember Our Child ministry, we are trying to get an oversight role (public governor) of the local Mental Health Trust, and we are working with the Laura Centre to try to bring a center to our local area,” Chris says.

Finding Experts Exchange

A UK resident, Chris works full time as a design engineer for Jaguar Land Rover.  It was his previous job, however, that led him to Experts Exchange.

“In order to do some work automating records I needed to get some help.  I quickly found EE where I liked the overall approach and started paying my way for the privilege,” Chris says.  “Some time later I realised my skills were starting to reach that of some of the experts … or so I thought.  I started trying to answer questions and despite a few hiccups found that I was learning exponentially as I researched the skills needed to try and answer the questions … all the while watching my betters ‘steal’ the question with a better/correct solution, (part of the learning).”

But working with computers was never a part of Chris’s plan.  In fact, he confesses to hating computers during his younger years.

“After completing local school, I joined the Royal Air Force, but I wanted to avoid anything to do with computers,” Chris says.  “As it happens I had chosen the electronics trade with the highest computing element, fortunate really since now I loved the experience and finished my career there on a programming team.”

To date, Chris has earned 24 certifications on Experts Exchange, including four genius certificates in the following technologies: VB Script, Microsoft Office Suite, Microsoft Excel and Outlook Groupware Software.  Chris also spends his time on the site as an Experts Exchange Clean-Up Volunteer, making sure abandoned questions get closed and Experts Exchange maintains a certain standard of excellence in technology solutions.

Before Chris’s son passed away, Richard had started following in his father’s footsteps and made himself known as Experts Exchange as Wally2k7.  According to Chris, participating on Experts Exchange never fails to remind him of his son.

“Every time I post (on Experts Exchange) I can see Richards eyes rolling and hear him shouting  ‘mum he’s doing it again,’” Chris says.

Both in life outside of Experts Exchange and on the site, it’s clear that Chris has done a fine job of honoring his son’s memory; and while we did not have the privilege of knowing Richard, we can say with full confidence that he is proud of the works his father is doing to honor his memory.

If you would like to donate to the Coventry Cathedral Remember our Child ministry, please visit: http://www.coventrycathedral.org.uk/about-us/support-us.php. For more information or to donate to the Laura Centre, please visit: http://www.thelauracentre.org.uk/Donate.html.