"Prominent businessman Bob Goldston dies"


People; Community


Allen, Sheronda.


The TimesDaily


The TimesDaily



Vicki Goldston


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Former businessman and community leader Bob Goldston died at his home Christmas Day. He was 60.

Goldston's family was with him when he died, said his daughter Camille Bennett.

"We were prepared, and, as my mother said, we got to lullaby him into heaven," Bennett said.

Goldston was co-owner of Family Ford, Family Lincoln Mercury and Family Hyundai and was listed among the Black Enterprise Magazine Top 100 Businesses for several years. His influence as a successful businessman made him a role model for all entrepreneurs, said Freddie Hogan, a founder of Mainstream Development Corp., a nonprofit corporation that promotes minority and small businesses in north Alabama.

"He was definitely an astute businessman," Hogan said. "I've never seen anyone so connected to a goal he set out for. He really wanted to be a successful businessman and achieved that three times over.

"He was an example of what a minority entrepreneur could do. He supported Mainstream and what our goals were. He knew we were trying to develop a culture where minority businesses are appreciated. He had no problem with younger and black entrepreneurs looking (up to) him. He's going to be missed."

Hogan said Goldston wasn't only about business but was an influential member of the community.

"He was very concerned and dedicated to the community," Hogan said. "He didn't wave a flag ... he did a lot of things he didn't toot his own horn about. He loved his family and loved this area and loved this community. He was a good positive example to the community."

Goldston was involved with the W.C. Handy Music Festival as a supporter and served as grand marshal of the festival's Street Strut two years in a row, said Gwen Woods, a festival official.

Grasping a cane and wearing a stylish summer suit, Goldston preceded crowds down the streets of Florence during the festival, garnering cheers and claps as he led others in a New Orleans-style pedestrian parade.

"He was very supportive of our event," Woods said. "I can honestly say every time I interacted with Bob I met genuine kindness. He was a special man and is going to be missed."

Richard Thigpen owns Family Ford in Florence and was partners with Goldston after Goldston became a co-owner in 1998.

"I never met someone who didn't like him," Thigpen said.

He said Goldston was a good salesman and gave back to his community and to his church. He said he bought out Goldston's share in the business two years ago.

"We had a deal that if one wanted to sell, the other had first option," Thigpen said. "All of the employees really love him. He was a good man.

Bennett said her father was "larger than life."

"Being his daughter was like being on a Ferris wheel at the top and staying on that high," she said. "He kept me there. He always told me how beautiful I was. I will never have a low self-esteem thanks to him. I couldn't ask for more in a father."

Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. Friday at Living Spirit Church on North Wood Avenue in Florence.

In addition to Bennett, Goldston is survived by his wife, Vicki, his son, Miles, and three grandchildren.

Original Format




Allen, Sheronda., “"Prominent businessman Bob Goldston dies",” Shoals Black History, accessed January 26, 2021, https://shoalsblackhistory.omeka.net/items/show/742.