Oscar Lawrence “Larry” Comer, II: July 28, 2022

Published 12:09 pm Monday, August 1, 2022

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Oscar Lawrence “Larry” Comer II, a Sumter County native, passed away on July 28, 2022 after a brief illness. Larry was born in Plains, GA, on June 18, 1933 to Caleb Fred Comer and Bert Jones Comer. He was a 1950 graduate of Americus High School, who later moved to Atlanta where he attended and graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned a BS in Industrial Management in 1954, and Master of Science Industrial Management in 1957. Commissioned Ensign, U.S. Navy, he served two years active duty with the Pacific Fleet. Larry was an innovative businessman with a heart for his community. He loved his God, his family, business and community, and believed in giving back whenever possible.
Larry is survived by his wife, Jane Little Comer. Larry and Jane met on a blind date in Atlanta and enjoyed an enduring love for one another spanning more than sixty-one years of marriage. Also surviving are his children: son Brandon Jones Comer and his wife Kim, of Americus, GA; daughter Lauren Comer Stovall of Savannah, GA; daughter Sarah Comer Jones and her husband Charles, of Griffin, GA; and six grandchildren, Davis Campbell and Delaney Claire Comer, Andrew Martin (preceded in death) and Sarah Elisabeth Stovall, Charlotte Elisabeth and Walker Comer Jones.
Larry, a true businessman, moved home to Americus in 1964 to create Metalux Corporation, a manufacturer of commercial and industrial lighting equipment. He constructed the offices and manufacturing plant in Americus where production began in 1965 with seven employees. Operations expanded rapidly during the succeeding twenty years to where he employed more than 1200 people in Americus, Ellaville, and Preston, GA and Eufaula, AL. During that time, President Jimmy Carter recognized Larry as the National Small Businessman of the Year at the White House in Washington, DC. Larry was also honored with the Georgia Small Businessman Award of the year in 1975, and named by the Georgia State Chamber of Commerce “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 1978. Before McGraw Edison Co. acquired Metalux in 1985, Metalux lighting equipment was a global company, distributed across all 50 states and internationally.
Ever the entrepreneur, in 1987 Larry organized and created Caravelle Boats, Inc. The Americus, GA, company produced power sport and offshore sport fishing boats, employing more than 130 people. In 1998, as Chairman, President and founder of Caravelle Boats Inc., he sold the company to the Caravelle Boats management team.
Later in life Larry and Jane moved to St. Simons Island, GA.  Always competitive, Larry continued to go to the “office,” which now meant long hours at the driving range or on the golf course.  Larry continued to enjoy his other hobby of driving Italian made sports cars.  While in St. Simons, Larry and Jane were members of First Baptist Church of St. Simons and enjoyed many close friendships there.  Eventually, Larry and Jane moved back to Americus and Larry got right back to where he left off – trying to improve his hometown.  He loved Georgia Southwestern State University and South Georgia Technical College.  He would often reminisce about his childhood and how he played on the Georgia Southwestern Campus and planted trees there with his grandfather.  Most recently, Larry and Jane moved to Griffin, GA, where their youngest grandchildren live.
As a Christian businessman he continued to be an advocate of the Judeo-Christian Ethic and the American Free Enterprise System. He served as a deacon at Central Baptist Church, and was devoted to his community, serving passionately in leadership positions to grow educational opportunities and small businesses in both Americus and across Georgia. As such, he was the first Chairman of the Board for the Technical College System of Georgia, the Vice Chairman of Business Council of Georgia and Georgia State Chamber of Commerce.
In the field of education, he served as: Trustee Georgia Southwestern State University Foundation; Trustee South Georgia Technical College Foundation; Georgia Tech National Advocacy Board; Georgia Tech Research Institute Board; Governor’s Commission Post-Secondary Education, and Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education. Within the business community, he served in many capacities, including: the acting President of Americus & Sumter County Chamber of Commerce and Co-Chairman Americus & Sumter Citizens Effecting Change CEC; Chairman of Sumter Bank & Trust Board of Directors; Board of Directors Bank of Commerce; The Board of Directors for Thomasville-based Davis Water & Waste Industries; the Board of Directors for Atlanta-based Southern Bank Group and the Georgia State Board of Industry & Trade and Sumter Regional Hospital.  Larry was a member of the Young Presidents Organization, Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity, and was the bat-boy for the Americus Phillies in the old Georgia-Florida League after World War II.
Larry and Jane were members of Americus First United Methodist Church.  Of all his many titles and accolades, the title of which he was most proud was “granddaddy.” Larry was a loving husband, father and grandfather who will be dearly missed.  A celebration of his life will be held on August 2, 2022, at 2:00 P.M., at Americus First United Methodist Church. Interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Larry’s memory to Georgia Southwestern State University or South Georgia Technical College.
To sign our online guestbook and express your condolences to the family, please visit www.hancockfuneralhomeinc.com
Hancock Funeral Home, 427 S. Lee St., is honored to be entrusted with these arrangements for Oscar Lawrence “Larry” Comer II.