Jacob S. “Jake” Heaton of Fayetteville, GA passed away on Saturday, March 18, 2017. Jake was born on December 16, 1932 in Valdosta, GA. Soon after, his family moved to Adair Park in Atlanta. Jake was a member of the first graduating class of Sylvan High School in southwest Atlanta, where he excelled in sports and leadership as the first student body President. He had a brief career in professional baseball as a member of the old Atlanta Crackers. The Army was his next adventure and upon his discharge, he enrolled in Southern Tech to study civil engineering and joined the Marine Corp Reserves.
Jake began his career in the Atlanta construction industry after graduating in 1957, and in 1966 founded Heaton Erecting, Inc. For fifty years he helped shape the skyline of Atlanta on projects such as the World Congress Center, Georgia Dome, Philips Arena, Phipps Plaza, Atlantic Steel, Delta Airlines, Six Flags, and most of the major high rise buildings in downtown. Jake served his industry well and received many awards and honors for his leadership and volunteering. He was active with the Georgia Business and Industry Association as a board member and was recognized in 1983 for his many years of service to the Georgia Business Council. Jake was a charter board member and the first Chairman of First Bank and Trust in Fayetteville. His greatest accomplishment in business was the thousands of lives he influenced for the better as a leader and mentor to his employees and customers. Many of those employees stayed with him for many years because of his commitment to them. He considered each of them a part of the Heaton family. His last public outing was the celebration of his company’s 50th anniversary in October.
Jake’s love for sports continued throughout his life. He was unbeatable on a racquetball court and won medals for his play in senior softball tournaments. He was an avid sports fan and hunter. His joy was spending time at his farm in Meriwether County, hunting, fishing, hanging out with his dogs, and enjoying nature.
Jake is survived by his wife, Tana Heaton; daughter, Carol Heaton Good (David); sons, Gary Heaton (Debbie) and Joseph Heaton; grandchildren, Sarah Basko, Amanda Heaton, Daniel Heaton, and Riley Heaton; great granddaughter, Lynah Basko; brother, Joel Heaton; sisters, Rosemary Storm, Judy Williamson, and Helen Lester.
A memorial service will be held Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 11:00AM at Fayetteville First Baptist Church, Fayetteville, with Rev. Glenn Stringham officiating. Inurnment will follow at Camp Memorial Park, Fayetteville. The family will receive friends Tuesday, March 21, 2017, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM. In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, www.michaeljfox.org.
Carl J Mowell & Son Funeral Home, Fayetteville – www.mowellfuneralhome.com