Dry cleaner business presses on with new name

Published 11:49 pm Friday, October 19, 2018

A Brookhaven native and his wife hope to clean up in the laundry business.

Don and Rockie Netherland bought Patrus Cleaners from Patsy and Rusty Yates six weeks ago — lock, stock and pressers.

The new business is called BeClean Cleaners and includes the plant and main store on West Monticello Street (formerly Ed’s Cleaners) and the plant and store with drive-through service on Court Street (formerly Quality Cleaners). The purchase also included five storefronts for customers to drop off and pick up clothes — two in McComb and one each in Hazlehurst, Prentiss and Natchez.

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Don Netherland, the son of the late John and Cleo Netherland, is a cardiac thoracic surgeon commuting to a hospital in Houma, Louisiana.

Rockie Netherland has managed various businesses in their 30-plus years of marriage.

They were living in Pensacola, Florida, eight years ago when Don, a Brookhaven Academy graduate, wanted to move back to the homestead in East Lincoln.

Rockie is a Byram native so coming back to Mississippi for her meant a homecoming for both of them.

Their oldest son, John, graduated high school in Florida before the move and attended Ole Miss. He’s an artillery officer in the Marines at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

Their daughter, Andie, graduated from Brookhaven High School, then Ole Miss. She’s currently in law school at the University of Oklahoma.

When the cleaners became available, the Netherlands looked at it as an opportunity to improve the business and buy into the community.

“We knew we weren’t leaving,” Rockie said. “We were staying in Brookhaven and wanted to invest in our hometown.”

While Rockie Netherland learns the ropes to catapult herself into the laundry ring, she’s leaning on her employees for help.

“There are great people here, some of these employees have been here 20-plus years,” she said. “They are very loyal, very committed to the business and the community. They love what they do.”

The Netherlands are focusing on customer service first, improving some of the basic services like creasing sleeves on shirts. They’re making more effort to make sure nothing goes awry from drop-off to pickup.

“We’re trying to put more eyes on the garment to check for quality issues,” she said.

Then they’ll try some expanded services like pickup and delivery for customers’ convenience.

They’ll also add monogramming services and scent-free laundering specifically for hunters.