JEFFERSON — The death of a local proprietor has caught an entire community off guard, but his family is planning to make sure his legacy continues to thrive.
Mike Carron, owner of Mike’s Down Under in downtown Jefferson, died Sunday from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident in Colorado.
“Mike’s dream was to run that restaurant and we’re going to do what we have to do to keep it going,” said Nick Carron, brother of the business man.
Mike’s Down Under pub and grill has operated for the past several years in downtown Jefferson. As the only place in Jefferson to see bands perform weekly, the establishment is a staple in the community.
“As far as going out to hear live music, in Jefferson, Mike’s place was it,” said Beth Laughinghouse, Mainstreet Jefferson program manager. “And before he opened up in 2001, there really wasn’t a place in downtown just to go to and eat, so he was ahead of his time there too.”
According to Laughinghouse, many local performers have graced the pub’s stage at one time or another before finding a wider audience.
“Corey Smith and Brantley Gilbert have both performed there,” said Laughinghouse. “Mike’s was a restaurant first, but its claim to fame has been providing an outlet for artists all over Northeast Georgia.”
Both Smith and Gilbert are Jefferson natives who have gone on to have success as singers, songwriters and recording artists.
According to Colorado State Patrol officials, 53-year-old Carron was riding northbound on Interstate 25 when the traffic ahead of him slowed, causing him to veer onto the left shoulder and ultimately lose control of his motorcycle. After being taken to the hospital, Carron, who was reportedly not wearing a helmet, succumbed to his injuries.
He is survived by his wife, Pamela Shirley Carron, daughter, Anna Catherine Carron and brothers, Nick Carron and
“He was loved by many and will be missed by many,” said Nick Carron. “He was a great man and a friend to all.”