The Dart: Man enjoys country living, working as a handyman

Published 8:46 am Monday, July 10, 2023

BROOKHAVEN — He threw a broken down cardboard box in the back of his white dodge pickup truck when he stopped and waved hello. Larry Rice was maintaining a rental property during his lunch break on the corner of Jackson Street and Pine close to where The Dart landed Friday. 

Rice grew up in Lincoln County and still lives out in the country in West Lincoln. He works in town doing maintenance for the county at the courthouse, boys and girls club, health department and DHS buildings. 

In high school, he played basketball at West Lincoln from 1973 to 1975. Rice said he still loves basketball and is only able to shoot hoops and watch his grandson play the game. He enjoys watching the NBA and college basketball in his spare time. 

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After high school, Rice went to the Job Corps where he learned how to become a brick mason. He said he worked in masonry for several years but eventually decided to do maintenance work instead. 

“I love doing what I do. It is fulfilling to me and helps me do other things around the house. I have learned a lot of stuff doing just handyman work,” Rice said. “It is always a challenge. There is always something different that you have to fix or repair. I will retire doing this work.” 

He has five grandchildren and enjoys spending time with them. Rice said he doesn’t have many hobbies but he does collect knives, swords and daggers. He quipped he tried to collect stamps but it didn’t last too long. 

Rice said he has collected some old coins too but his biggest collection is of knives with over 100 different knives. “I try to find one that is so different from anything else,” Rice said. “I picked up on it one day. We went to Disney world and I bought one and I started collecting them. That was 12 years ago. I started collecting knives when I travel.”

He still lives out in the country with his brothers and sisters close by. Chipmunks often play in the yard as he watches from the porch, despite his best efforts to get them to leave he joked. Birds singing, peace and quiet are some of the benefits of country living. People are good out there and they are good in town too, Rice said. 

“I have stayed here because of the people. The bad folks may get the headlines but the good folks I meet every day. I love the people here, we have good folks,” Rice said. “I’m pretty much staying here until I die unless something drastic happens. It is a great area and a good place to work, good place to raise a family. Out in the country, my brothers and sisters are around me but you still feel like you have your own place. In the country you are by yourself and it is peaceful. I can sit on my back porch and sit under the shade and watch life go by. You need peace in this day and time.”