CELINA-Funeral services were held here at Upton Funeral home Tuesday for longtime local business founder/owner Ezell Nevans, who passed away Sunday, November 24 at the age of 87.
Nevans’ legacy is the thriving hardware and building supply known as Celina Lumber Company–one of the oldest continuously-operated family businesses in Clay County (if not the oldest), which has served the home and building needs of residents in this area since 1962.
Nevans and his wife Wilma, along with Ed Qualls, bought the business from Henry Swann at the old location adjacent to Fitzgerald Cemetery 51 years ago. A couple of years later, the Nevans’ bought Qualls’ share of the operation, and Celina Lumber has been “all in the family” ever since.
Celina Lumber’s move to the current location here on Mitchell Street came in 1977, at about the same time Nevans’ eldest son Gary came home to the family business and three years later his younger son Danny did the same. Not long after that, Nevans turned the day-to-day operation of Celina Lumber over to the brothers and the business remains in the same family as third generations now are a crucial part of the company’s success.
Nevans, a WW II veteran, was well known here in the community and was still a fixture at the store up until his death.