Dwayne Hawkins, Crown Automotive founder and philanthropist, dead at 85

It was never the cars that fueled Dwayne Hawkins’ drive for success.

In fact, his sons say their father — founder and CEO of Crown Automotive Group, one of the largest automobile dealerships in the southeast — wasn’t really much of a gearhead. He favored station wagons over muscle cars.

“We had a Pontiac Safari handle-side wagon we rode around in, which is borderline child abuse,” quipped his son Kevin. “I don’t remember ever seeing a GTO in the driveway. But it wasn’t about the cars. He wanted to accomplish something.”

In his 85 years, Mr. Hawkins racked up accomplishments. The self-effacing, humble, generous patriarch of the Hawkins family died of natural causes on Christmas Eve. What he leaves behind, his family said, is a legacy of love — for hard work, making the most of his time, and helping others find their road to success.

Mr. Hawkins built St.

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