Brown Loflin, former Davidson County commissioner and founder of Denton FarmPark, dies at 84

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FOX8's Chad Tucker with Brown Loflin

DENTON, N.C. — G. Brown Loflin, a beloved member of the Denton community, died Tuesday at the age of 84, according to his obituary.

Loflin was the founder of Denton FarmPark, home of the Southeast Old Threshers' Reunion, on Jim Elliott Road in Denton.

He was born on Nov. 23, 1934, in Davidson County, and in addition to starting up the thresher's reunion, he was a veteran of the U.S. Army Reserve and had served as a Davidson County commissioner for two terms and on the Secondary Roads Council under Governor Jim Holshouser.

He was a member of the Denton Lions Club and Denton Lodge #404 AF and AM, and trustee of Chapel Hill United Methodist Church.

The Town of Denton presented him with the 1996 Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Denton Chamber of Commerce gave him the 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award. He had also received North Carolina's highest civilian award, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.

He survives his wife, Ruby Johson, who had been with since Oct. 5, 1957, as well as his son and daughter, four grandchildren and a great grandchild.

Loflin founded the Denton FarmPark back in 1970, nearly 50 years ago.

The Southeast Old Threshers' Reunion started when Loflin and some buddies decided to offer airplane rides to raise money for the local rescue squad. Farm machinery was added to give folks something to look at while they were waiting on their ride.

"Last time I counted we had more than 1,200 tractors," Loflin told FOX8 in 2018.  "It's amazing how it has grown over the years."

The plane rides were replaced by train rides when the Handy Dandy Railroad was put in service in the 1980s.

Despite wrestling with Parkinson's disease, Loflin remained the driving force behind what has become one of the largest events of its kind in the entire country.

"When I look around and see all this crowd," he said. "I'm proud of it."

According to his obituary, memorials may be made to the following organizations:

  • Parkinson Association of the Carolinas
  • Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma Research Foundation
  • American Children’s Home

 

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