Hoyt Lavelle Yokem
Benton, LA – Hoyt Lavelle Yokem, 90 of Benton Louisiana, peacefully passed away Wednesday, June 6, 2018 in his home, surrounded by family. A celebration of his life will be held at Asbury United Methodist Church 2395 Airline Drive, Bossier City, LA, Monday June 11, 2018 11 a.m. with burial to follow at Rose- Neath Cemetery 5185 W. Swan Lake Rd. Bossier City, LA. Officiating will be Dr. Donald A. Webb and Dr. Pat Day. Visitation will be held at Rose-Neath Funeral Home, 2201 Airline Drive, Bossier City, LA, Sunday, June 10, 2018 2 to 4 p.m. and Monday, June 11th at 9:30 a.m. until time of service at Asbury United Methodist Church.
Hoyt was born on October 16, 1927 in Blevins, Arkansas to Ruby and Oda Yokem. He worked as a farmhand until his enlistment in the United States Navy where he served during WWII.
After serving our nation, Hoyt went to Houston, TX, where he worked in the Houston shipyards, went to telegraph school, mastered the Morse code and was hired by the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad. He was assigned to work in Pitkin, LA, where he met and married his lovely and faithful bride of 68 years, Penny Riggs of Merryville, LA.
In 1951 Hoyt entered the automobile business at his brother-in-law Paul Thomas’ Dodge-Willys Dealership in Woodville, TX. Desiring to move back to Houston, Hoyt and Penny re-settled there where he joined his brothers, Jack and Monroe in a used car business in Houston. The three brothers were successful used car dealers for two decades until they all received new car franchises with Hoyt receiving the Toyota franchise in Shreveport, LA in 1970.
Hoyt and Penny started Yokem Toyota with only three employees and after 48 successful years Yokem Toyota is now in their third generation of family ownership and operation with more than 150 loyal hard working employees.
Hoyt has served on many boards including, Central National Bank of Houston, Shreveport Bank and Trust, Hibernia National Bank, and Centenary College of Louisiana. He also served as president of the Shreveport-Bossier New Car Dealers Association as well as many terms on the Gulf States Toyota Dealer Council and Board of Governors.
Hoyt’s life was dedicated to his wife and family, his community and the success of Yokem Toyota. He and Penny have been life-long members and supporters of the United Methodist Church. Hoyt will be missed not only by his family and loved ones but also his employees that have always been like extended family.
He was predeceased by his parents, five brothers and three sisters.
Hoyt is survived by his wife of 68 years, Hazel (Penny), his son Alan Yokem and wife Suzette, his seven grandchildren, Robert Yokem and wife Lori, Charles Yokem and wife Sarah Beth, Andrew Yokem, Jerod Collmar and wife Kathryn, Darren Collmar and wife Jana, Thomas and Emily Yokem, five-great grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
The family would also like to give a special heartfelt thank you to his doctors and caregivers, Richard M. Zweig, MD, Thomas Rodsuwan, MD, Tommy Robinson, PA, Belinda Waites, Cedric Martin, Vera Davis, Alonzo Nelson, and Keke Tyler, who have dedicated these last two years to his around the clock wellbeing and comfort.
Honoring Hoyt as pallbearers will be his grandsons and nephew Bob Crosby.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials may be made to Asbury United Methodist Church, 2395 Airline Drive, Bossier City, La 71111, American Diabetes Association, 2451 Crystal Drive, Suite 900, Arlington, VA 22202 or LSU Health Sciences Foundation, 920 Pierremont Road, #506, Shreveport, LA 71106.