Central mourns passing of local servant

CENTRAL — “To live in Central was to know George. He will be missed.”
That one statement echoes the sentiment behind dozens of comments on the guest book of Robinson Funeral Home’s online obituary of George Thomas Reid, Sr.
Reid, 81, of Central, was killed Tuesday, May 17, after being struck by a car while picking up debris on U.S. 123. Owner and operator of George Reid Wrecking Service, Reid was making sure the highway was clear for motorists.
Conducting a simple online Google search for his name results in numerous articles, comments and memories about the remarkable impression he left in his community.
Reid’s business, established in 1952, demonstrated his concern for and service to his community. Reid spent nearly 60 years coming to the aid of those in need.
“How many of us, growing up, were told ‘Call George Reid!’ by our parents?,” wrote one visitor to Reid’s online guestbook. “They trusted him to get us out of a jam and keep us safe. Lots of memories.”
Former Central mayor and longtime city councilman Harrison Holladay described Reid as a Central icon.
“He loved everybody and everybody loved him,” said Holladay. “He was an outstanding man. He appreciated everything that was given to him, and I think this is why he gave back to everyone else.”
In addition to his wrecker service, Reid was also one of the original members of the Central Rural Fire District Board — an appointment he received in 1992. During his service on the board, the Central Rural Fire District received a 2009 pumper truck and a new Toyne fire truck.
Funeral services were held on Friday, May 20, in the Chapel of Duckett-Robinson Funeral Home. Reid was buried in Mt. Zion Cemetery. He was given an honorary escort by the Central Fire Department.
“There were so many cars in the parking lot that day,” said Holladay. “George helped anyone who needed it regardless of race, color or creed. I don’t think there is really any way of dealing with the loss. There is just a big void. No one could ever replace him.”