Robert Flatt: Unique outlook on life in light of disease

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Robert Flatt, of Houston, who has Parkinson’s disease, spoke in Mexia recently, sharing his unique outlook on life and his determination to stay positive while living life as fully as he can within his physical limitations.
Flatt and his wife, Nancy, who is also his caregiver, had ended up in Mexia, staying with his cousin Dick Flatt and wife Linda when Hurricane Harvey displaced thousands of Houston residents in late August.
Introducing his cousin, Dick Flatt bragged on Robert’s high level of intelligence, making sure no one stereotyped Robert as anything less than smart because of his difficulty standing still and speaking clearly while he addressed the Mexia Lions Club, where Dick Flatt is a longtime member.
Since Dick Flatt was close to his cousin growing up, he remembers Robert as the smart high school student who won the state championship in slide rule competition.
Robert then went on to graduate from Rice University in electrical engineering, worked in California briefly, then went to Harvard University where he earned an MBA. After that Robert Flatt worked for Cameron Iron Works in Houston, a company that has been a global leader in the oil-and-gas industry for nearly 100 years. He also taught business classes at Rice part-time for many years.

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