Joseph Lafayette Hodges, son of Willie and Eliza Hodges, was born May 27, 1945, in Clio, South Carolina. He departed this life to enter into eternal rest and reward on August 26, 2020, at McLeod Regional Medical Center in Florence, SC.
While his passing leaves sorrowful hearts, he will be remembered for his cunning smile, his love of life, his charming personality, heart of gold, and the love for his family and friends.
Jody attended Magnolia AME Church in Bingham, SC and was a member until he departed this world. He was educated in the Marlboro County Public School System. He was known as a hard worker and as a young man who worked alongside his father in farming cotton and tobacco.
In 1964, He was one of the first African American men to work for the factory, Craftex Creations, in Latta, S.C.
In 1966, a young lady named Ala Ford caught the heart and eye of Jody. He and Ala were married and resided in Latta, SC. Through their union, four children were born.
Jody was always a big dreamer. He always wanted to do more and to be more to provide for his family. He began driving long distance trucks and hauling various cargo across the United states. While driving truck, he came across a beautiful state called West Virginia. Jody moved to Charleston, WV and resided there for over 45 years.
While living in West Virginia, Jody was introduced to two men, Chuck Shealy and Alvin Yinger, where a job opportunity was presented to work for a company Hi-Way Paving Construction Company. He worked as a labor, operator, and a cement mason. He was an active member of the various Local Unions. This was how and when Jody developed his love of working with concrete. This was a game changer in his life.
Later in life, he met and married Carolyn Mickey of Pulaski, VA, and four children were born from that union.
Jody was thought of as one of the wisest men of his time when it came to highway paving work. In 1981, a friendship was formed with Andrew Lambert. With his skills and knowledge of concrete paving, Ho-Lam Construction Company was founded. He found contentment, passion and peace to be the owner and operator of his own company. This great love of concrete gave him the opportunity to teach his family, friends and loved ones the ins and outs of highway paving. His love of paving concrete roads in the state of West Virginia and surrounding states would give Jody the opportunity to teach three of his sons to become young entrepreneurs and owners of their own construction companies.
Jody was a recipient of numerous awards where he was recognized for his outstanding concrete work. As many people drive across West Virginia and bordering states, you cannot help but remember that Jody was a part of building these concrete interstate highways, roads and streets. One of his biggest accomplishments was the expansion of Interstate I -77 on the West Virginia Turnpike.
As his health began to decline, in May of 2020, he made the decision to move back home to Latta, SC, where he resided until his death.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Willie and Eliza Hodges; one son, Joseph Michael Hodges; and his brother, Willie Lee Hodges, Jr. Jody leaves to cherish his memory three sons, Larry Hodges of Charleston, WV; Charles (Megan) Hodges of Dublin, VA; and Andrew Hodges of Pulaski, VA. Four daughters, Martha Roberts of Columbia, SC; Cynthia Campbell of the home, Latta, SC; Stacha (Ralph) Ashburn of Portsmouth, VA; and Alaina Hodges of Wytheville, VA. A daughter-in -law, Lynne Hodges of Charleston, WV. Four sisters, Geraldine (Marvin) Goings, of Dillion, SC; Barbara (Robert) Johnson of Florence, SC; Martha (Kenneth) Gritter of Philadelphia, PA; Carolyn Hodges of Jacksonville FL. Three brothers Charles Hodges of Bingham, SC; Kenneth Hodges of Chesapeake, VA; and Ronnie Hodges of Bingham, SC. Fifteen grandchildren, Six great grandchildren, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
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