ST JOSEPHS, MI -- James H. LaRoux, a coin machine veteran from Michigan who most recently worked for Moss Distributing, died on Nov. 19. He was 63.
LaRoux was born in Wisconsin in 1948 and was raised in Michigan. For the past 32 years, he worked in the coin-op music and games industry's distribution sector, where he earned a stellar reputation as a salesman and product expert.
"Jimmy was a wonderful man and one of the best salesmen our industry has ever had," said Jerry Marcus of Dandy Amusements (Los Angeles). Before serving at Moss, LaRoux worked with Marcus for more than 20 years when the latter ran Bally Midwest Distributing and later when he owned Atlas Distributing Co., a former Midwestern distribution powerhouse. LaRoux was general manager of Atlas's Grand Rapids, MI, office. He also worked at Shaffer Distributing Co. (Columbus, OH), which currently has five offices in the Midwest, for a brief period.
LaRoux was active in community affairs. He was a sergeant in the Berrien County Sheriff's Department Reserve Division and was a member of the Benton Harbor High School Class of 1966 Reunion Committee. A Chevrolet salesman before starting his career in coin-op, he loved cars and was said to have purchased many for his travels visiting operators throughout the Midwest.
LaRoux is survived by his wife of 42 years, Betty; his children, Kelly Guthrie and Marcus LaRoux; two grandchildren, Claire and Levi Guthrie; and sisters Megan MacCabe and Sandee Carillo.