Holloway: Remember Barhanovich and Canaan as Biloxians who made a difference

Mayor A.J. Holloway today ordered flags at all Biloxi municipal facilities to fly at half staff to mark the passing of longtime community leaders Sherman Canaan and Mark Barhanovich.

Canaan, who died Saturday after battling cancer, was former president of the Biloxi Port Commission, a seafood factory owner, and a onetime king of the Biloxi Shrimp Festival and Blessing of the Fleet. Just months ago, the city named one of its commercial docking facilities as the Sherman Canaan Back Bay Fishing Dock, at the north end of Lee Street.

Barhanovich died in a boating accident Sunday morning. He was vice president of Banccorp South Insurance Co., where his duties included overseeing the city’s employee health insurance plan. However, he was more widely known for his philanthropic endeavors, which included work with city youth leagues, a host of civic groups and for its support of high school athletics.

Holloway ordered the flags lowered until Thursday, after both men have been buried.

“Both of these men made their marks on Biloxi,” Holloway said. “Both of them dedicated their lives to helping making our community a better place to live. Sherman’s battle with cancer meant that we were somewhat prepared for his passing, although you really never are. Mark was in the prime of his life. He became a grandfather for the second time only three weeks ago, and I know that he had so much more he wanted to do.

“Both of these individuals, in a very positive way, are great examples of people who loved their community, who were involved, and who made a difference. I ask everyone to join me and Macklyn in praying for them and their families.”