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Owner of W.Va.’s largest car dealership dies

AR-150309582CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Jim Love, 85, died at his home in St. Albans Wednesday. He had been in declining health for several years.

Love owned C&O Motors, the state’s largest car dealership franchise. Many in the automotive industry knew Love to be one of the last of the old lions in the industry.

While he thrived on competition, and grew the dealership he purchased in 1966 exponentially, he was always willing to share his philosophies and expertise about the automotive industry with young dealers, industry friends said.

His friends remember him as a spiritual, detail oriented, private and persuasive person. He looked out for others and made charitable contributions without wanting recognition, they said.

Love was dedicated to his wife and the automotive industry, they said. He got his start in the industry at age 16 fixing cars at a service station on Charleston’s West Side. He also loved racing cars, said Ruth Lemmon, president of the West Virginia Automobile and Truck Dealers Association.

She knew Love for 32 years.

“Whatever he set his mind to, he never wavered,” Lemmon said.

Love was an automotive legend not just in West Virginia, but across the country, Lemmon said. C&O Motors is the nation’s fifth-largest used car dealership…

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