This morning, friends of Roy Crownover expressed their respect and admiration for the man – and their sadness for the loss.

Crownover passed away Sunday at Medical City in Dallas.

“Roy was such a dear friend – not only to me, but to my entire family and to everyone,” Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce president Debra Wakeland said, noting Crownover was “a member of my church family,” as both attended Central Presbyterian Church in Waxahachie.

“He was such a true mentor in every sense of the word. So honorable. Such fine character. It was witnessed by the successful career he had in Dallas,” she said.

“He was really an icon in the Dallas business scene. We (Crownover’s Waxahachie friends) don’t know that part of him, but he was an icon in his field,” Wakeland said, noting that Crownover had the honor of twice winning the Malcolm Baldridge award, a prestigious business honor.

“He was so kind, sweet, loving, caring and such a fine business person. I bet if you called anyone in the Dallas business community, they’d say there was not a better man. He will be missed by so many – his family, his business family, his church family,” she said.

Wakeland mentioned that her son, Will, had an ongoing joke with Crownover about an “Easter egg turquoise jacket” that Crownover wore.

“He could relate to any age group, young kids and every group of people and any income level,” she said of Crownover.

“That just tells what a wonderful person he was. He could put himself in any situation and any topic,” she said, stressing that Crownover was a very humble man.

“I knew Roy mainly through Waxahachie Lions Club,” Dr. Joe Langley said of his fellow member.

“He was very kind, very generous. He always encouraged any effort, any idea, any project by the Lions Club that was helping someone in the community. When it was mentioned, Roy would always be one of the first to say, ‘I want to do this,’ ” Langley said, adding, “We lost a real champion in the community.”

“Roy was just a man that everyone loved,” Mayor Joe Jenkins said of his friend and fellow Lions Club member. “He was active in the community, had lots of friends. He was also an outstanding businessman with an outstanding family.

“It is a sad day. We will really miss him. Everyone loved Roy,” Jenkins said.

“Roy Crownover was a great man,” long-time friend Peggy Atwell said, speaking on behalf of herself and her husband, J.D.

“He was not only a great businessman, but he was a great friend. He was always mindful of the needs of others and enjoyed life. He loved his family, his job and his farm. And he loved to go to the horse races.

“We will miss him dearly,” she said, saying she and J.D. were “privileged and blessed” to have shared a friendship with Crownover.

“Sometimes in life you are lucky enough to cross paths with a person who exemplifies honor, respect and compassion, and I consider myself very lucky to have known Roy Crownover,” said Gingerbread House children’s advocacy center executive director John Wyckoff. “I appreciate his support of our center, and know he will be greatly, greatly missed by so many people.”

Crownover resided in Italy with his wife, Bernyce.

Funeral arrangements are pending with Wayne Boze Funeral Home.

E-mail Jennifer at jennifer.howell@wninews.com