On Saturday, May 30, 2015, Wayne K. Sawyer, President and CEO of Bennett’s Creek Nursery passed away peacefully. He was 59 years old.
Wayne was born to the late Clarence M. Sawyer and Shirley G. Sawyer Mebane. He is preceded in death by his brother Clarence Sawyer, Jr.
Wayne is survived by his step-father, Robert A. Mebane, Sr. and spouse Jessie; previous spouse, Sharron D. Sawyer; children, Matthew W. Sawyer and fiance Melanie Kam and her son Elijah; Kathryn M. Sawyer Simmons and spouse Brandon and their son Reese; his brothers, Kenneth Sawyer, Kenneth Mebane, and Robert Mebane, Jr. and their families. He was also survived by close friend Penny Wolford.
Wayne has been part of Bennett's Creek Nursery since its inception in 1974 under the mentorship of Arthur J. Lancaster Jr. and he became President and CEO in 1994. His nursery employees were like his family and they will continue to carry on his vision for the company.
Wayne lived a life of community service that included being involved in many organizations.
His service began at the Bennett’s Creek Rescue Squad as a teenager and has continued on to Towne Bank, AAA, and the Richard Bennett Trust currently.
Wayne served on the SNA Board of Directors from 2000 - 2006, serving as president in 2005. He also was a recipient of SNA’s David E. Laird, Sr. Award, received in 1988 as Young Professional of the Year. Wayne was a committed supporter and volunteer of our industry associations. He was very involved in the VNLA, MANTS and SNA. He gave freely of his time and his resources to move the industry forward, all the while positioning Bennett’s Creek Nursery in a unique position as a leading producer.
The family will welcome visitors on Friday, June 5th from 6-8 PM at Sturtevant Funeral Home, Bennetts Creek Chapel, 2690 Bridge Road, Suffolk, VA 23435
Wayne’s memorial service will be on Saturday, June 6th at 2 PM in Believers Church 4500 Peek Trail, Chesapeake, VA 23321.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Virginia Tech Foundation and designate to the Hahn Garden in memory of Wayne Sawyer;
Gift Accounting, University Development (0336), 902 Prices Fork Road, Blacksburg, VA 24061 or the TowneBank Foundation; 6001 Harbor View Blvd., Suffolk, VA 23435.
Our deepest sympathy goes out to the Sawyer family and Bennett’s Creek Nursery.
Bennett's Creek Nursery is committed to honoring the wishes of Mr. Sawyer by continuing his vision and moving forward with the business he dedicated his life to and worked so hard to cultivate. They will proudly continue serving their customers with the same level of care, attention, and detail that Wayne worked diligently to ensure through his daily leadership, guidance, and mentoring. His family and our extended family of staff and friends, wish to express appreciation for all of the condolences they have received.