Sonny Merryman


Floyd Withers Sonny Merryman, Jr., 89, of Rustburg, Virginia passed away peacefully on Saturday December 7, 2013. He is survived by his devoted wife of 60 years, Frances Taylor “Lou” Merryman of Rustburg; daughter A. Patricia “Pat” Merryman of Rustburg; son Floyd W. Merryman, III of Smith Mountain Lake and grandson M. Lee Merryman of Rustburg. Sonny was pre-deceased by his parents, Floyd. W. and Margaret Muldowney Merryman, a sister, Anne Merryman Evans, and one brother, Thomas Merryman. In addition to his immediate family, Sonny leaves a large extended family and a host of close friends, business associates and co-workers who will miss him dearly.

Sonny proudly called Rustburg home his entire life. He graduated from Rustburg High School in 1942 and matriculated to VPI - now popularly known as Virginia Tech. He was a loyal Hokie fan who enthusiastically supported the university’s academic programs and athletic teams until his final days. In 2006, Virginia Tech presented Sonny with the university’s most prestigious individual honor – the
Ruffner Medal recognizing his lifetime of contributions and service to his beloved alma mater.

Sonny Merryman

In 1967, he and his wife, Lou, founded Sonny Merryman Inc. – a small trailer equipment and bus dealership. Six decades later the company has grown immensely and is widely respected as one of the nation’s most prominent bus dealers. In addition to the Lynchburg area corporate headquarters, where Sonny worked daily until recently, the company has two other locations in Virginia with more than 125 statewide employees.

Sonny’s loss will be felt by countless individuals and organizations that he touched in his lifetime. He was a staunch champion of the virtues and rewards of education. Sonny provided hundreds of young
Virginians with scholarship assistance.

He generously shared his success and good fortune with numerous youth development organizations and other community, benevolent and worthwhile causes. His positive impact on the lives of others is immeasurable and will continue for many years to come.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests those wishing to offer support and condolences to please consider memorial gifts to the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets - University Development -0336, Blacksburg, VA 24061, Lynchburg College Burton Student Center, 1501 Lakeside Drive, Lynchburg, VA 24501, The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lynchburg - 1101 Madison Street, Lynchburg, VA 24504 or the Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center -1267 4-H Camp Road, Appomattox, VA 24522.

A Memorial Service and Celebration of Life honoring Sonny Merryman will be held Tuesday December 17th at 2PM at Snidow Chapel on the Lynchburg College campus. The family will receive friends following the service at a reception in the Hall Campus Center Ballroom. Classes will not be in session. Ample parking should be available across campus. The family will receive friends immediately following the service at a reception in the Burton Student Center. Tharp Funeral Home and Crematory (tharpfuneralhome.com) in Lynchburg is assisting the family.

If you'd like a PDF of Sonny's obituary, click here