BATON ROUGE,LA(FOX44) — Visitation and Funeral services for beloved Baton Rouge business man and philanthropist Gerry Lane begin Monday. Lane died Friday morning. He was 82 years old when the veteran car salesman lost his battle with cancer.
"He was diagnosed in 1980 with cancer the doctor said you are only going to live six months. He lived 33 years. He did that because he would not let it beat him. He was just going to live," Leo Honeycutt, Lane's good friend and biographer, explained.
To Honeycutt, His friend Gerry Lane was larger than life.
"I mean he was fun. He was a cross between Geronimo and John Wayne," Honeycutt described.
Honeycutt said he never saw Lane without a smile: "He said life is attitude life is all attitude. If you think things are good they will be. "
Lane grew up poor, but he never gave up.
Honeycutt says it paid off.
Lane ended up becoming one of Baton Rouge and the country's best car salesman.
"Course he has sold $10 billion worth of cars. Ten BIllion over about fifty years," Honeycutt said.
Lane said the key to selling cars was honesty.
"It's really simple he just told the truth," Honeycutt said. "If you have any hope for repeat sales you got to treat people right. That was really the underlying sales pitch was do unto others as you would have them do unto you. "
It's something Lane tried to teach his employees.
"He was willing to impart his information even if they became a competitor later," Honeycutt stated.
Honeycutt said one of things that made his friend so special was his drive to give back.
"He really believed to that you can't out give God," Honeycutt describe Lane's philosophy. "He really believed the more you gave the more you got in return. So it really is true. It's more blessed to give than to receive and he really believed that."
The public is invited to attend a visitation for Lane Monday from noon to five at Greenoaks Funeral Home on Florida Blvd.
A private funeral service will follow.
In lieu of flowers, the family wants mourners to donate to YMCA youth sports programs.