New generation reopens Jayroe’s Garage

By Haley Mitchell Godwin

Jayroe’s Garage, one of Luverne’s oldest businesses, founded in 1953 by James Tolbert Jayroe, is back up and running. After being closed for around six years, the founder’s great-grandson, Zane Jones, has reopened the garage and offers complete auto service and repair.

For over 60 years and through four generations, the garage has been helping Crenshaw Countians and many that live outside the county with their automotive repair and service needs.

According to a 1963 edition of the Luverne Journal, “Jayroe’s Garage is one of the best automotive repair businesses that can be found anywhere, offering complete and competent automotive service and repair.”

The excerpt from the Aug. 7, 1963, publication of The Journal’s now retired section “We are on our way to trade in Luverne” which featured a Luverne business each week, went on to say that Tolbert Jayroe, owner of the “well-established business” was extremely qualified with 18 years of experience in automotive repair at the time the paper was published (1963) with 10 of those years spent owning his own business.

While Tolbert Jayroe never really retired, he left the industry with a total of sixty-four years of experience under his belt when his son Keith, who took over Jayroe’s Garage in Jan. of 1983, closed the shop in Jan of 2018.

Although the newest owner of Jayroe’s Garage, head wrench turner Zane Jones of Luverne may not yet measure up to his predecessors as far as years of experience, his passion and desire to live up to the legacy left behind by Tolbert Jayroe is immense and according to Jones will forever be his driving force.

“I am very excited and thankful for the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of my great-grandfather and my grandfather,” Zane said. “My dad, Johnny Jones, also ran his towing business from this building for a little while, so it is very special to be able to work in this shop. After college, I worked at SunSouth, a John Deere tractor dealer in Brundidge, for four years but I was ready for something different. I am honored to be able to put that experience and my education to work here in my hometown. I plan to keep the shop memories of days gone by alive and I can’t wait to make new memories of my own.”

Zane’s grandfather, Keith Jayroe, can be found in the shop on occasion, helping Jones get to know the ropes of owning an auto repair garage.

“I am very proud of Zane and my Daddy would be very pleased to know he’s carrying on the family business like this,” Jayroe said. “There are a lot of things you have to take care of when you step into a position as Zane has done. You have to do it all, make sure you do the best job you can do and be sure the customers are satisfied. It is not just fixing cars either, you have to sweep the floors and clean the bathrooms, and keep the books.”

Jones’s mother, Stacey Jayroe Jones, may have only worked in the garage for one summer when she was 13, but her grandfather Tolbert Jayroe did give her a “payday” each Friday along with his 3 mechanics, Euel Register, Gilbert Register and Ed Tate.

“I always wanted a “payday” like the mechanics got each Friday so Pepa gave me a dollar every Friday until I was around 18,” Jones said. “I have so many great memories from the time I spent in the shop when I was growing up. I remember getting those cold, delicious drinks in the glass bottles from the old drink machine. I watched my grandad and my dad in the very same shop I get to now see my son work in. It is wonderful to see another generation take over.  I could not be any more proud of Zane and I know he will prosper just like Pepa and my dad did.”

Jayroe’s Garage is open Monday through Friday 8am-5pm

Call Zane Jones at 334-335-5032 or 334-429-1121 for informatio