LOUISVILLE - Milo Devain Bryant, of Louisville, KY, Chairman and CEO of Ayrshire Electronics, died early Wednesday morning, April 3, at Jewish Hospital after a brief illness. Born in Rochester, Indiana, he was the youngest of two boys and three girls born to Oliver and Fern Bryant. Mr. Bryant attended Purdue University, and served in the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division. He began his career as Vice President of Graco Steel in Louisville, KY and then moved to Brandeis Machinery. Through his twenty years of association with Brandeis Machinery he rose to the position of Executive Vice President and General Manager. He left Brandeis to launch his first business Bryant Equipment selling coal mining and heavy construction equipment. He has, over the years, been involved in the ownership of several businesses, including Challenger Lifts, Inc., the largest privately owned manufacturer of automotive hydraulic lifts in the United States; Quality Lifts, an internet import lift company; Bryant Equipment, Inc.; AdChris Coal in Alabama; and M&D Mining with mines in West Virginia and Kentucky. He also built Ashland Materials, a large coal processing plant on the Big Sandy River, and was a partner in developing Coal Liquid Technology. Headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, Mr. Bryant owned and operated Ayrshire Electronics, a full-service electronic contract manufacturing service company, employing over 600 people with divisions in Harrodsburg, Kentucky; Fayetteville, Arkansas; Oakdale, Minnesota; Corinth, Mississippi; Reynosa, Mexico; and Taipei, Taiwan. Mr. Bryant was appointed by Kentucky Governor Wallace Wilkinson to serve as Secretary of Transportation and Commissioner of Highways in 1988. He became a national leader as Chairman of the Governor's Task Force on School bus Safety, and most states today have adopted the standards, training and safety features implemented under his leadership. Mr. Bryant served three terms on the Louisville/Jefferson County Regional Airport Authority. He was a member of the Governor's Advisory Commission for a Drug Free Kentucky, the Board of Directors of the Kentucky Coal Association, and the National Coal Association; and co-founder of Kentuckians for Better Transportation, Inc. He was also the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from University of Kentucky's College of Engineering. He was a member of the Westport Road Baptist Church; the Pendennis Club, and Big Spring and Harmony Landing Country Clubs in Louisville, Kentucky; and the Club Pelican Bay in Naples, Florida. Mr. Bryant is survived by his wife, Mary Dee Bryant; daughter, Sharon Oates; granddaughters, Christina and Kaitlyn Oates; grandson, Adam Oates; and his brother Audra Bryant. Mr. Bryant's visitation will take place on Tuesday, April 9, from 6-8:30pm at Pearson's Funeral Home, 149 Breckenridge Lane, Louisville, KY 40207; and on Wednesday, April 10, from 11am-1pm at Westport Road Baptist Church, 9705 Westport Road, Louisville, KY 40241. His funeral service will be held at the church at 1:30pm following Wednesday's visitation. Burial will be at Cave Hill Cemetery.
Published in Lexington Herald-Leader on Apr. 7, 2013