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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Kurvin C. Fish, co-founder of the Casey's General Store chain, died Monday at age 86, according to a report in the Des Moines Register.
The company name is an adaptation of his initials -- K.C. Donald Lamberti, who launched the Ankeny, Iowa-based convenience store chain with Fish in 1968, said Fish was the company's top executive and the chief salesman who talked with investors interested in opening new stores, the report stated.
"People always knew he was telling them the truth," the newspaper quoted Lamberti as saying. "He wouldn't oversell. He always pointed out the good and the bad and let people make the decision."
Steven Risdal, who bought the first Casey's franchise, said of Fish, "His word was his bond."
Today, the company has 1,300 stores in nine midwestern states. The company's sales have topped $2 billion annually.
The Fish and Lamberti partnership began in 1967, when Fish told Lamberti he should buy an oil company that had four gas stations in Ames, Boone and Newton. Lamberti flippantly said he would buy the company if Fish would run the stations.
"A couple weeks later we were looking over financials," Lamberti told the Register.
Services for Fish are at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Waukee United Methodist Church. Brandt Funeral Home in Dallas Center is handling arrangements, the news report stated.