Family ownership team leads Coast lawnmower store through 50 years
LONG BEACH, Miss. (WLOX) - With a flip of a sign, Jerry’s Lawn Mower Sales and Services opened for business Tuesday morning, just like it has been for decades now.
“It’s definitely an honor to have a business for 50 years,” owner John Favre said.
The store has come a long way since original owner Jerry Farve started fixing mowers in 1971 after he was out of work due to a pipe fitters’ strike.
“He had three kids he had to feed so he put up a sign that said lawn mower repair and then he never went back to welding,” John Favre said.
The shop has been a Long Beach staple since and once Jerry stepped down due to his health, his son John picked up where he left off in 1994. Now, the Board of Aldermen will acknowledge the family and their store’s longevity.
“It’s been a long road, but it’s been fun,” John Favre said.
Now in the age of big-name retailers and online sales, mom-and-pop shops are harder to come by, but the Favre family is still banding together - even bringing John’s daughter Franny Carpenter into a leadership role in 2017.
“I thought it was going to end with me but she loves it and she does a good job,” he said.
Franny was always around the store through her youth like her father was. However, after graduating from college and getting married, she decided she wanted to form a father-daughter tag team.
“For whatever reason, this stuff clicks with me. I’m good at it. It’s a legacy and I get to be a small part of it,” she said.
Over the past five decades, the store has managed to muscle through major hurricanes and economic recessions. It’s even doing well through the COVID-19 pandemic, which is why the family has a lot of confidence for the future of the business.
“(I’ll) make it another generation, another 50 years,” Carpenter said.
As to the store’s future, she said she’s learning the ropes through the perspective of her parents and grandparents.
“It’s cool seeing what gave me such a great time in real-time,” she said.
The store’s blessings are something owners want to pass on anyone who comes through the door.
“We help them the best we can, being kind and courteous,” John Favre said.
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