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Four generations serve the national security mission

Sep 30, 2018, 04:13 PM

It’s said that families that play together, stay together. But what about work together? Ever wonder if you’d be able to work day in and day out alongside your mom, spouse or sibling? It turns out nearly 100 Honeywell employees do just that at the Kansas City National Security Campus. 

When Program Manager Kyle Pressly joined Honeywell in 2012, he became the fourth generation in the Pressly family to support national security. The Pressly family has a long history at Honeywell, dating back to the 1950s when the company was known as Bendix.

His father, Bob, retired this year as a principal mechanical engineer after 33 years of service at Honeywell. Bob’s dad and Kyle’s grandfather, Bruce Pressly, was a metallurgic engineer and stainless steel welding expert who retired in 1992 after 38 years of service. His maternal grandfather, John Kolesar, also started his career in national security when he joined Bendix in 1952. John started as a “helper” then became a machinist and draftsman designer. Even without a degree, John was promoted to a process engineer in the model shop before retiring in 1990 after 38 years of service. 

Kyle’s first few days on the job were slower as he waited for his security clearance. One day while on the company intranet, he came across the Bendix newsletters from the 1950s. There he found articles about his grandpa John, who was a member of the Bendix Trapshooters team. He even found his father’s birth announcement printed in 1961!

For those keeping track of Kyle’s family tree, that equates to more than 146 years of Pressly family service in support of national security!

Kyle jokingly says he’s broken the family’s engineering streak by being the first Pressly with a business degree at Honeywell. Despite all of his family history, he says he’s felt no pressure to fulfill any kind of legacy and enjoys hearing stories about his family from co-workers. 

“When I first started, people would tell me they worked with one of my grandfathers. It was great to hear stories of my family and the missions they supported. I feel there is more a sense of family here at Honeywell in general because people go out of their way to teach you something or have a conversation. It’s great to work on something that is an important element of our nation’s security. You can have an impact every day.”