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Home mySSlife Family Owned Businesses Family Owned Business: At Edwards Used Cars, automobiles are at the heart of their business – and lives

Family Owned Business: At Edwards Used Cars, automobiles are at the heart of their business – and lives

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In the market for a used vehicle, classic, compact or heavy-duty? There’s no need to travel far to find the perfect match — Eugene and Rita Edwards at Edwards Used Cars have been in the business for 34 years.

This couple, longtime citizens of Sulphur Springs, give buying a used vehicle that feeling of buying from family. Located on Gilmer Street just one block south of the downtown square, Edwards Used Cars is convenient and affordable.

“Here in Sulphur Springs, you really get that down-home feeling from everyone, especially our customers,” Eugene’s wife and manager of the business. “To me, it is a small town and the only place for us.”

At Edwards Used Cars customers have 35-40 various vehicles on the lot to browse with the Dodge diesel truck becoming the most popular sale.

“It (Dodge truck) gets good fuel mileage plus most like its towing power better,” Eugene said, but added they have “a little bit of everything on our lot.”

“We keep everything priced below retail to give people affordable pricing,” Eugene said.

As the son of a man that gave him his interest in automobiles, Eugene knows his products well.

“My dad also had a paint and body shop. It inspired me. I practically grew up in a garage,” Eugene said with a smile. “I may not know much, but I know cars.”

He said he worked for a while in an upholstery shop, then “just jumped into the business.”

“I went from purchasing one to two cars from auction and repairing and cleaning them up myself to owning my own dealership,” Eugene said.

The couple are also big fans of drag racing and street-rodding, Rita said with a grin.

“Eugene has been racing for 35 years, and we began entering car shows five years ago,” she said. “We are either at the races or at a car show almost every weekend. So as you can see, cars are pretty much the nucleus of our lives!”

Eugene admits to a love of racing cars, but since acquiring his first dealership license in 1976, he has focused most of his efforts on selling. And he has done so without complaints — according to the Better Business Bureau, Edwards Used Cars has been an upstanding member with an A+ rating since 2003.

They are also proud members of the Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce and active in many facets of their community.

“We have been active members of the Downtown Business Alliance for five years” Rita added. “I have served as president for the last four years.”

She was also chosen as the 2008 Woman of the Year and served on the Sulphur Springs Planning and Zoning Commission from 2007 to 2009.

Despite a down economy,  business has been “really picking up.”

“The weather does hamper some, but those (in construction or landscaping) that can’t work in the rainy conditions often use that time to shop for cars,” Eugene explained. “Tax refund time also usually helps traffic on the lot.”

Edwards Used Cars can also be found online at www.EdwardsUsedCars.com. The simple, easy-to-use website allows customers to browse the current selections by make, model, photo and other details, or just click on the car finder tab for assistance in locating a particular vehicle.

The website even includes a detailed map pinpointing the exact location of the dealership at 211 Gilmer Street in Sulphur Springs.

Financing sources are also readily available.

“We have a company that can guarantee credit,” Rita said, adding that terms and conditions apply.

Eugene and Rita have been married for 39 years and have two children, Cody Edwards of Austin and Casi Jones of Emory and one granddaughter, Paylen Jones.

The couple has been at their current location in Sulphur Springs for the past 24 years, but Eugene and Rita aren’t alone in the business. For the past year and half, Jeremy Blount has been assisting them with sales.

To contact Eugene, Rita or Jeremy, drop by the dealership Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. or Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m., or call (903) 885-6731 or (903) 885-1236 or fax (903) 885-5895.




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