Coping with Grief
We would like to offer our sincere support to anyone coping with grief. Enter your email below for our complimentary daily grief messages. Messages run for up to one year and you can stop at any time. Your email will not be used for any other purpose.
Francis Marion Lott, a visionary leader and one of the chief architects of Douglas-Coffee County's unprecedented economic boom, passed away at the age of 87 after a courageous, hard-fought battle with cancer. His remarkable legacy and profound impact on the community will endure for generations to come.
After completing his high school education at Culver Military Academy in Indiana, the Douglas native went on to graduate from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1959 with bachelor's degrees in architecture and science. Following five years of service as an officer in the Air Force, eventually reaching Captain’s rank, he returned to Douglas and became an integral part of his family’s business, Lott Builders Supply Company, before founding Lott Properties Inc., where he ventured into real estate development.
Lott's commitment to local economic development was unwavering. In the late 1970s, he spearheaded initiatives that brought industry and prosperity to Douglas, including the establishment of spec buildings to attract investment and create job opportunities. His dedication and ingenuity propelled Coffee County onto the statewide radar, transforming it into a beacon of economic opportunity.
Beyond his professional accomplishments, Francis was known for his generosity and philanthropy. He established the local Economic Development Fund and revitalized downtown Douglas with projects like The Atrium, which he donated to the Chamber of Commerce in 2014, a testament to his commitment to community revitalization. Together with his wife, Diane, he endowed the G. Wayne Clough Georgia Tech Promise Scholarship, prioritizing Coffee County applicants, to ensure access to education for deserving students, embodying his belief in the transformative power of learning.
Lott's contributions were recognized with numerous awards and accolades, including the GT Alumni Dean Griffin Community Service Award, GEDA’s Volunteer of the Year, Lion of the Year and Life Membership designation by the Int’l Assn of Lion’s Club and the Garland Thompson Lifetime Achievement Award and Distinguished Citizen of the Year by Chamber of Commerce. He was a founding member of the locally owned and operated Douglas National Bank which has grown into one of the most successful financial institutions in the area and served on various committees and regulatory bodies including President of Southeast Georgia Economic Development Council, Douglas Chamber of Commerce President and Georgia Chamber of Commerce board member. His leadership and enduring legacy is evident in the thousands of jobs he helped create throughout the region, leaving an indelible mark on the fabric of Douglas and Coffee County.
Francis took a sincere interest not only in his community but also in the lives of his family and myriad friends and had a passion for helping those around him succeed. He mentored and advised many who came into his orbit, embodying a spirit of generosity and support that touched countless lives. A great lover of travel, he encouraged everyone to venture out and see the world. After retiring to Amelia Island, FL, he continued to take a keen interest in the local community and build strong relationships there, often gathering with friends at his beloved Pajama Dave's (PJD’s), where his warmth and wisdom endeared him to all who knew him. The lifelong fitness enthusiast enjoyed golf, snow skiing, biking and could be found paddleboarding on the ocean well into his eighties.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Clinton Lynwood Lott Sr. and Mary Sanders Lott and two brothers, Jimmy Lott and Clinton Lynwood Lott Jr.
He is survived by his loving wife, Diane, children Jeffrey Lott (Joanne), Kirby Lott, Mary Jane Brady (Mike), and Allyson Reeves-Land (Ronnie). Grandchildren Andrew Lott (Michele) Paige Lott, Jack Brady, Mary Kate Brady, great-grandchildren Kirby Lott and Scarlet Lott, sister-in law Lynda Leach, nephews David Lott (Jenny), Brad Leach (Audrey) Andre Leach and many other nieces, nephews and innumerable friends who will cherish his memory. As the community mourns his passing, his vision and dedication serve as a beacon of inspiration, guiding future generations to build upon the foundation he laid.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, February 15, 2024 from 6:00PM until 8:00PM, at Sims Funeral Home.
Funeral Services will be held on Friday, February 16, 2024, at 2:00PM, at First Methodist Church in Douglas, GA with Rev. Benji Varnell and Rev. Paul Elliot officiating and Stuart Smith, David Lott, and Ronnie Land delivering eulogies. Interment will follow the service at the Douglas City Cemetery.
Active Pallbearers will be: Clint Lott, Clay Lott, Chris Grantham, Chris Tuten, Bradley Leach, Ronnie Land, and Andre Leach.
Honorary Pallbearers will be: Douglas National Bank Employees, Lott Builders Employees, Douglas Lions Club, Bob Preston, Mallory Smith, John and Cleary Tanner, Sherman and Mary Ann Dudley, Bill and Ann Crider, Lucy Polk, and Dick Linder.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to: Douglas First Methodist Alter Fund, The G. Wayne Clough Georgia Tech Promise Scholarship, or First Baptist Church Fernandina Beach, Florida.
Sims Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.