Remembering Huey Stockstill

Published 7:00 am Friday, February 6, 2015


Picayune native businessman Huey Pierce Stockstill Sr. passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 4 after 79 years of life. The community will miss him for not only his many contributions but also for his heart.

“He worked hard and played hard,” Stockstill’s only daughter Suzy McDonald said.

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She recounted her father’s humble beginnings in Picayune and how he would later become one of the most prominent figures in the community.

Stockstill was born on Jan. 5, 1936 just outside of Picayune to his parentsLavelle W. Stockstill and Lula Spiers Stockstill.

“He married my mother when he was 18. After they built a house together on his father’s land here, he started out as a heavy equipment contractor for his cousin,” Suzy said.

A couple of years later, she said her father saved up enough money to buy his first truck in 1962. In 1964, Stockstill started his own company, which was incorporated in 1970 as Huey Stockstill, Inc. By the 1990’s, it grew into a full service road construction and paving company located in Picayune.

From then on, the business has been a family affair. Suzy, along with her three brothers, Ricky, Huey Jr. and David Stockstill have all worked at their father’s business.

Suzy worked for her father for 22 years until she retired a couple of years ago.

“We used to laugh because our father used to walk around everywhere thinking of things for us to do. He was constantly expanding his business… sitting still wasn’t good enough,” Suzy said.

Not only was he a businessman, he also gave back to the community, she said.

“Anytime that a business needed equipment, sand or gravel for a project, my father helped. He worked on pave work for the school district and donated equipment to do the ground work for a local baseball field,” Suzy said.

He also worked with Pearl River Community College to establish a program to teach people how to become equipment operators in order to prepare them for a job in the industry, Suzy said.

Pearl River County Administrator Adrain Lumpkin said the college dedicated a building to Stockstill called the Huey Stockstill Sr. Construction and Transportation Training Center.

Lumpkin has known Stockstill since he was a kid.

“He was a great asset to the county. Not only as a businessman and employing many people, just as a person in general. He’s done a lot of good,” Lumpkin said. “We’ve lost one of our true friends and one of our long time business personnel. I know he’ll be missed.”

Picayune Mayor Ed Pinero Jr. said Pearl River County won’t be the same without him.

“Mr. Huey was a great man. He did more for the community than anyone will ever know. He didn’t need people to know that he did it. He simply did things out of the goodness of his heart,” Pinero said.

Stockstill’s company currently employs 250 people, Pinero said.

While Stockstill always had business on his mind, Suzy said he had a soft spot for children.

“He always made regular donations to the St. Jude and Feed the Children organizations,” Suzy said. “He was a paradox. Very stern in some respects, but then a world of sun.”

Recently, Suzy said Stockstill had been ill for more than a month due to complications from a medical procedure to treat a long-standing condition.

Suzy recounted something her father used to say, “I’d rather be able to see the good that my gift does than see it go to an executive’s office,” she said in regards to his charitable spirit.

“He will be very much missed by everyone,” Suzy said.

Funeral arrangements have been set for today at 2 p.m. at New Palestine Baptist Church.

Stockstill is survived by his wife of 60 years, Gayle Burge

Stockstill, and his children, Ricky Stockstill, Suzy McDonald, Huey Stockstill Jr., and David Stockstill. He’s also survived by 9 grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren; his sisters, Nelda Norwood, Jo Appleby and Jane Powe; his brother, Rev. Wayne Stockstill; sister-in-law Sybil Stockstill; his cousin Melva Smallwood and numerous nieces and nephews, according to the obituary from McDonald Funeral Home.