Bob Evans - Rest in Peace
I almost missed this story it was barely a blurb in the business section of this mornings newspaper. Bob Evans, the man behind a great American success story passed away yesterday. Here's a link to an online story that didn't make it into my newspaper.
Bob Evans, whose quest for quality sausage to serve the truckers who filled his 12-stool, 24-hour-a-day steakhouse in southeast Ohio led to the creation of a restaurant chain that bears his name, died Thursday, Bob Evans Farms Inc. announced. He was 89. Evans died at the Cleveland Clinic, Evans' family told the company. The clinic said he died of complications from pneumonia.A sign of the success of the restaurant chain is I have never been in one that wasn't busy and I've never had bad service at a Bob Evans Restaurant either.
Evans complained that he could not get good sausage for the restaurant he started after World War II in Gallipolis in southeast Ohio. Starting with $1,000, a couple of hogs, 40 pounds of black pepper, 50 pounds of sage and other secret ingredients, he opted to make his own, relying on the hog's best parts as opposed to the scraps commonly used in sausage. He began selling it at the restaurant and mom-and-pop stores, and peddled tubs of it out of the back of his pickup truck.
It marked the beginning of what is now a restaurant chain with sales of $1.6 billion.
"You might say the truck drivers did my research for me," he said. "They would tell me that this was the best sausage they ever had, and then buy 10-pound tubs to take home."
Anyone who bought 1,000 shares of Bob Evans when the company went public in 1963 at $9 per share would have shares worth more than $2 million today.