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WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — After nearly five decades in the convenience store industry, Don Krueger handed over the keys to his last remaining Krueger’s BP station in Grimes, Iowa, to startup Yesway.
Located at 1905 S.E. 37th St., Krueger operated the store for 16 years. It is now Yesway’s 33rd store in Iowa and its first in the metro, reported The Des Moines Register.
To commemorate the end of an era, Grimes Mayor Tom Armstrong declared March 16 as Don Krueger Day in the city. "The citizens of Grimes, Iowa, have been able to count on Don Krueger to provide a welcome community gathering place," the mayor said in a city proclamation at a City Council meeting.
Yesway's Rebecca Teiken presented Krueger with a plaque for Don Krueger Day at the Grimes store while the chain's inventory team readied for the transition.
"People are proud of you," Teiken said. "And we're proud to be a partner of yours."
Krueger opened his first gas station in 1968 in West Des Moines and has since owned nine stores in the Des Moines metro, all baring the Krueger name and branded as Amoco or BP. He began working in the gas station business with his brother to pass time during the summers in college before he was approached by Amoco about opening his own store. The rest is history, Krueger recalled.
"It's been a lot of fun. My wife and I raised five boys and put them through college and made a good living, so I can't complain a bit. I don’t regret anything," Krueger said, adding, "I enjoy people. Our goal [was] when people come into our store, to make it a better day for them and be friendly and treat people the way they want to be treated."