ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Long-time Abilene resident and automotive mogul Larry Hall has died at age 69 after fighting a long battle with cancer.
His funeral will take place at First Baptist Church at 1333 North 3rd Street in Abilene Friday at 4:00 p.m.
Hall, who is well-known and recognized for his work in Abilene’s automotive industry, has been involved with the Lawrence Hall Family of Dealerships since he was just a little boy, growing his family’s enterprise from a local business in Anson to a multi-dealership operation that includes franchises with Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick, GMC, Ford, Lincoln, Mazda, and Volkswagen.
Hall also had a big heart for Abilene, getting involved in multiple philanthropic events and other local causes, even helping with remodeling and rebuilding homes and providing dental care to citizens in need.
He is survived by his loving wife of 11 years, Sydney Shea Woodard, four children, and numerous other grandchildren and family members who will miss him dearly.
Read the full obituary in honor of Larry Hall below:
Larry was born October 29, 1952, in Anson, Texas, to Lawrence Mitchell and Myrl Horn Hall. He was their third child and the first baby born at Anson Memorial Hospital. Raised in Anson, Larry attended school there until his graduation from Anson High School in 1971. Larry attended Southwest Texas State University and McMurry University. Larry always said that he gave his life to Christ daily, but he experienced a profound impact on his faith after attending A Walk to Emmaus in 1997. Larry was a member of Wylie Baptist Church for over 25 years where one of his favorite memories was his performance in the living Christmas tree.
Larry married Sydney Shea Woodard on May 29, 2011, and they have built a life together of service and love for their friends and neighbors. Larry has been most proud to be a father to his four children: Michele, Haskell, Christian, and Harrison. Being “Big Daddy” to Rachel, Mac, Jag, Kate, Pierce, and Macy was truly the role he wanted to be in and the one he most cherished.
While many people in the Big Country recognize Larry Hall’s name in the local automotive industry, the story of his life extends before and beyond his family’s business. When Larry was only four years old, his parents started Lawrence Hall Chevrolet in Anson. From an early age, Larry learned to work hard and prioritize people in his father’s business. That lasting value was a cornerstone to Larry’s character and his business practices from his earliest involvement in the Anson family business. For almost 20 years, Larry worked alongside his father, growing and building the Lawrence Hall automotive enterprise with his brother, Mitch. In 1989, Larry and Mitch purchased the Larry Rigby Chevrolet Mazda dealership in Abilene, ushering a new venture for the Lawrence Hall enterprise while bringing the same family values to the new location. Since that time, Larry and Mitch have purchased multiple franchises in the Abilene area and evolved the business from 15 employees to almost 200, serving as one of the largest family-owned and operated local businesses in Abilene and the Big Country. Larry and Mitch have owned and together operated the Lawrence Hall Family of Dealerships which include Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick, GMC, Ford, Lincoln, Mazda, and Volkswagen franchises. From the beginning of his involvement in the dealerships, Larry believed deeply in devotion to his family and their business; he extended that devotion to every customer and every employee. In recent years during his health battles, he extended that devotion to his medical team both here in Abilene and in Houston. If you knew Larry Hall, you were as good as related to him, and he treated you as such. Larry’s early lessons in prioritizing people and doing business with integrity provided the foundation for how he continued all his business ventures over the past 50 years. Today, his family at Lawrence Hall Abilene as well as his family at home grieve his passing but hold tightly to his ideals.
Under Larry’s work and leadership, the Abilene dealership was awarded the Corporate Star Award in 2008 from the Abilene Chamber of Commerce. For the Texas Automobile Dealers
Association, Larry served as a District Director in 2010 for the Western Division. He also served as the Western Division Vice Chairman from 2011-2016.
Larry loved Abilene and has been well-known to be a community-minded, benevolent individual, supporting numerous causes. The Lawrence Hall name has graced many programs, t-shirts, signs, and flyers in sponsorship for countless community events and endeavors through the Abilene ISD and Wylie ISD, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the Abilene Chamber of Commerce, Dyess Air Force Base, Taylor County Expo Center, the Abilene Youth Sports Authority, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, West Texas Fair and Rodeo, West Texas Rehab, Western Heritage Classic, Abilene Crime Stoppers, the Food Bank of West Central Texas, along with many nonprofits and private individuals who simply needed a compassionate hand. Larry had a heart for the hurting, and he was responsible for remodeling and rebuilding houses as well as providing private dental and medical care for people he discovered to be in need. His own employees have said they never knew when he would provide a bonus or gift simply because he knew it was needed. If Larry found out about anybody who needed support or encouragement, he would find a way to provide it.
As Larry’s life on this earth has closed, many mourn his passing and hope to continue his legacy. Survivors include his wife, Shea Woodard Hall of Abilene; his daughter, Michele Lee Hall Newcomb, and husband, Jimmy, of Abilene; his son Lawrence Haskell Hall and wife, Kendra, of Clyde; his daughter, Christian Elizabeth Hall Watson of Flower Mound; his son, Harrison Edmund Hall, of Manhattan, New York; his grandsons, Mac William Brecheen, Jag Richard Watson, and Pierce Hall Watson, all of Flower Mound; his granddaughter, Rachel Elizabeth Watson of Flower Mound; his granddaughters, Kate Michele Hall and Macy Lou Hall, of Clyde. He is also survived by his sister, Dana Annette “Ann” Hall Tankersley and husband, Jimmy, of Knox City; his sister, Lana Janette “Jan” Hall Lollar and husband, Steve, of Anson; his brother, Mitchell Edmund Hall, and wife, Patty, of Anson; his mother-in-law, Janet Payne of Abilene; his father-in-law, Clyde Woodard of Hubbard; his brother-in-law Shayne Woodard and wife, Jennifer, of Austin; his sister-in-law, Shannel Anderson, and husband, Charles, of Abilene. Larry’s nieces and nephews include Stephanie Lollar Perez and husband, Ramiro “Medo,” of Colorado City; Lawri Tankersley Lynn and husband, Scott, of Knox City; Boyce Tankersley of Abilene; April Tankersley Mercer of Abilene; Lance Mitchell Hall and wife, Shelli, of Abilene; Hayes Hall and wife, Danee, of Anson; and Ty Baynes of Abilene. Along with his family of survivors are Larry’s ranch foreman and friend, Zack Winters, his wife, Bailey, and their daughter, Hadley, of Clyde as well as family friend and caregiver (and “favorite wife,” as Larry called her) Maria Rodriguez and her daughter, Alejandra of Abilene. Larry is also survived by a multitude of cousins, great-nieces, great-nephews, dealership family, and friends-like-family who have blessed and encouraged Larry beyond measure.
Pallbearers will be Wayne Yates, Raymond Diaz, Tony Littlefield, David Gist, Gary Galbraith, Lou Zientek, and Bill Beam. Honorary pallbearers will be Boyd White, Cory Foreman, Rick McWhirter, Lawson Davis, Davie Garner, Jason Dickerson, Darrell Lindberg, Jim Corbett, Hobby Stevens, Randy Burson, Sonny Goode, Aaron Waldrop, Darrell Breland, and Buddy Muller.
A funeral service will be held on Friday at First Baptist Church in downtown Abilene at 4:00 p.m.
Hall’s loved ones are asking that anyone who feels called to do so make a donation to a charitable organization, such as the Food Bank of West Central Texas, Anson United Methodist Church, and Wylie Baptist Church, in his memory.