Bob Redniss was born in Yonkers, N.Y., and lived in Ann Arbor, Mich., with his mother and brother, before they settled in Stamford in the 1930s. In January 1942, at the age of 19, Bob left his studies at UConn, enlisted in the U.S. Army, and served in the Army Air Force as a Master Sergeant and Navigator on B-17 missions in Europe. In addition to navigating on these flights, Bob, who was based in England, did aerial reconnaissance and photogrammetry –the use of reliable measurements from aerial photographs for mapmaking and surveying. During one flight, his plane was shot up, and he was sent to a London hospital and then to the United States for reconstructive surgery on his left hand. He later received the Purple Heart, among other commendations.
Prior to his honorable discharge, when home on leave in 1943, Bob married his high school sweetheart, Claire Walter. After his discharge, he worked for his brother, Alex, who was designing chemical plants around the world. During trips to France, Bob fell in love with wine, became an oenophile, then a sommelier and achieved the rank of chevalier in the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin (Fraternity of Knights of the Wine-Tasting Cup).
In the early 1950s, Bob built starter homes in Stamford, including his own on Maitland Road in Glenbrook. In 1957, he bought the surveying and engineering firm of Harold A. Parsons Co. He and Claire ran the company together out of their house until 1965 when the firm became Parsons, Bromfield and Redniss and moved downtown. As the business grew, first Raymond and later Richard joined them. In addition to many civic activities including Exchange Club, Boy Scouts, and the United Way Bob was president of the Stamford Land Trust Conservation and ARI (Always Reaching for Independence), when he passed away in 1984.