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    Obituary: Dean Werries, 82

    Presided over Fleming at height of defunct wholesaler’s heyday

    Dean Werries, former CEO of Fleming Cos., died. He was 82.

    Werries, who retired from the CEO post at Fleming in 1993 and transitioned to chairman of the board until 1994, subsequently served as Secretary of Commerce for the state of Oklahoma, and more recently had served as director emeritus for Sonic Drive-In. Werries also served as chairman of the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and the National Grocers Association (NGA).

    Having served in the United States Army during the Korean War, Werries was born May 8, 1929, and is survived by his wife of 50 years, Marjean Werries. He graduated high school in Minneapolis, Kan., where he starred on the high school football team. A graduate of the University of Kansas in 1952 with a bachelor’s degree in business, Werries was a major contributor to the university, especially the School of Business. He and his wife also established the Dean Werries National Merit Scholarship Fund, the Marjean Werries Scholarship Fund and the Dean and Marjean Werries Scholarship for the Performing Arts fund.

    He began his business career in 1955 in the sales department of Fleming’s Topeka, Kan. Division. He was named president of Fleming Co. in 1978; chairman/CEO in 1989; CEO and board chairman in 1993; and retired in 1994.

    Upon his retirement from Fleming, Dean joined the board Sonic Drive-In and in 1995, was named as its chairman and 14 years later, as a director emeritus.

    A funeral will be held for Werries on May 1 at 10 a.m., in the Chapel of the Crossing Community Church, 14600 North Portland, Oklahoma City, Okla., with internment to follow at Rose Hill Cemetery. In lieu of flowers the family requests that you make donations to the Alzheimer’s Foundation or a charitable donation of your choice.

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