Mr. Benny Hoyt Earley, a resident of Ozark, died at Flowers Hospital in Dothan on September 24, 2021.
The Burial Office and Holy Eucharist will be said beginning at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 16, 2021, at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, 811 Camilla Avenue, Ozark. Hoyt was a long-time communicant and former member of the vestry of St. Michael’s Church. Because seating is limited to the church and parish hall, the service will also be streamed live through the website of Fuqua-Bankston Funeral Home, Ozark.
Hoyt was born in Geneva on October 18, 1957, the youngest child of Paul Jackson Early and Doris Lewis Early, and both his parents and his sister, Barbara Early Sanders, and his nephew, Wesley Holland, preceded him in death. He was survived by his spouse, Clayton Davis, his brother, Paul Jackson Early, Jr. (Susan), his brother-in-law, Dwight Sanders, his nephew, Jeffery Holland (Cecilia), his nieces, Kelly Daus (David) and Becky Stinson (Paul), and a host of cousins and other family. He wanted to thank Lori and Ken Stephens and Dr. Juan and Gloria Fernandez, members of his St. Michael’s family, who in addition to his spouse and sister, made certain that someone was present with him throughout his lengthy hospitalization in early 2016 following the stroke that resulted in his disability retirement from Davis & Associates Attorneys at Law, with which he was employed as legal assistant and firm manager beginning in August 1991. Prior to that time, Hoyt was employed as an electron microscopist in the chemistry lab at the Dothan facility of Sony Corporation of America, beginning shortly after his graduation from Auburn University, with a B.S. in chemistry. He was also a graduate of Geneva High School.
Throughout his 24 years with the law firm, Hoyt focused his primary efforts on assisting older persons and persons with disabilities, assisting tens of thousands of clients throughout Alabama in obtaining disability and retirement benefits and health insurance to which they were entitled and in educating them and their professional and lay care givers about the legal and public benefits rights of seniors and persons with disabilities. He was also a key leader in the effort to prevent and detect Medicare and other health care fraud and to prevent abuse of long-term care facility residents. He was in the first class of long-term care ombudsmen who were certified following the passage of the Alabama Long-term Care Ombudsman Act, which was drafted by his spouse.
Hoyt loved animals, especially his dogs and numerous indoor cats, all of which were strays and rescues. Several of his pets lived more than twenty years including two that benefited from groundbreaking surgical procedures. He was fond of and a student of all genres of music, architecture, horticulture and landscape design, video and sound systems, antiques, movie memorabilia, mythology, archeology, and history. He personally designed the restoration of and additions to the Dowling-Steagal House, his and his spouse’s historic home and property on Broad Street in Ozark, including the addition of a swimming pool, koi pond and numerous other water features, and log cabin pool house. He and Clayton particularly enjoyed numerous trips throughout the country to attend auctions and visit shops at which they acquired the antiques that filled their house. Hoyt scoured the internet and found sources from which to commission numerous stained glass windows, chandeliers, plaster crown molding, and marble flooring and intricate inlays copied from archeological sites.
In lieu of flowers, donations should instead be made to the Ozark-Dale County Humane Society, Post Office 2502, Ozark, Alabama 36361.