Longtime Beverly’s Barbecue owner dies
By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer
COLUMBIANA–Long-time owner and operator of Beverly’s Barbecue and Columbiana native Beverly McKenna has dies at the age of 81.
McKenna was a staple in the city of Columbiana, and one of the main reasons was for her restaurant at 121 Old Highway 25 West.
McKenna, or simply known as “Granny” by many in the community, owned and operated Beverly’s Barbecue from 1972-2005 before she retired and sold the restaurant to another owner.
She was a “people person” and always had a passion for cooking, according to her son Rick Pearson.
“She just loved people and always liked to help people, and the restaurant was a great place to do both,” said Pearson. “She always had a passion for cooking, but she had a personality where she loved to interact and meet people.”
Beverly’s was founded when someone else had built a restaurant and McKenna worked there. The original business shut down and McKenna ended up buying the restaurant where she worked, and then turned it into Beverly’s Barbecue.
In the beginning, Beverly’s started out as just a carry-out restaurant in a smaller building and then it was torn down and a bigger restaurant was built on the same property.
From then on, Beverly’s was known for serving quality barbecue with a friendly atmosphere and loyal fan base.
“It was just a fun place to go and eat and mom would never let me pay,” Pearson recalled of the restaurant. “It was a good place to eat and a great family atmosphere.”
McKenna was also known for supporting the community. She always supported Shelby County High School and its sports programs, and people knew she was always willing to participate in community events.