Roger Gant Jr., a former president of the Alamance County textile company Glen Raven, died Monday. He was 86.
Gant, who lived in Burlington, was president of the company from 1972 to 1989. Glen Raven was started by his grandfather in the community of the same name in 1880.
Gant served in World War II and then attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After graduating, he returned to Alamance County with his wife, Rose Ann, and began working for Glen Raven in 1948.
Under his direction, Glen Raven introduced synthetic awning fabrics and created the Sunbrella brand, making the company a major player in the global fabric market.
After retiring from management, Gant served on the Glen Raven board of directors for 55 years. He retired from the board in 2001 and then served as director emeritus.
His daughter Anne Gant told the Burlington Times-News that her father enjoyed his work so much that after he retired, he kept his office and convinced his secretary to come out of retirement.
The paper reported that visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. today at the Rich and Thompson Funeral and Cremation Service in Burlington. A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Thursday at the Episcopal Church of the Holy Comforter in Burlington.