Bosselman chairman dies at 67 following cancer battle

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Bosselman Companies announced the death of Chairman Chuck Bosselman on Saturday, Jan. 7, following a battle with cancer. Bosselman, 67, was a second-generation business owner; his father, Fred, founded the first Bosselman’s location in 1948. In 1967, Chuck Bosselman became general manager of the Grand Island Interstate 80 Bosselman Truck Stop and was credited with shaping many of the practices truck drivers find standard today.

The Bosselman Travel Centers were among the first to offer showers, movie theaters and fast-food restaurants within a truckstop. Since then, he was instrumental in establishing the AmBest network of truckstops, authorized the Grandma Max’s Restaurant concept, added several fast-food franchises to the company and in 2011 was a driving force in establishing the Uni-Maxx Truck Care Network, a full-service truck repair shop network including the 35 Boss Truck Shops and the 38 Wingfoot Truck Care Centers owned by Goodyear. This Uni-Maxx Network now has more than 70 locations coast to coast.

Bosselman recently was named the winner of the National Association of Truck Stop Operators Hall of Fame award and was to receive the honor at the NATSO Show 2012 in Las Vegas in February. The award recognizes individuals for their notable participation in their communities, industry and the association. Bosselman had volunteered for both the NATSO board of directors and the NATSO Foundation.

“NATSO and the truckstop industry have lost a leader and a friend,” says Lisa Mullings, NATSO president and chief executive officer. “Chuck was an innovative thinker whose energy and enthusiasm were a driving force behind his success. Chuck worked tirelessly for the benefit of the entire industry, and we will miss his leadership and his unwavering commitment.”

In Grand Island, Bosselman supported many organizations, including the American Red Cross, the Boys Scouts of America and the Girls Scouts of America. The Bosselman family contributed to the conference and convention center at the Heartland Events Center and long has been associated with the $75,000 Bosselman/Gus Fonner Stakes at the Fonner Park horseracing track.

The Bosselman family also has helped Stuhr Museum, Crane Meadows Nature Center, Heartland United Way, Crisis Center, Children’s Miracle Network, MADD, Make-A-Wish Foundation, DARE, Goodwill Industries, College Park, 4-H, Zion Lutheran Church and School, Arthritis Foundation Nebraska Chapter and the National Cancer Society Foundation, among other local and national organizations. The Bosselman family recently was named the 2011 recipient of the Grand Island Independent’s Community Builder Award, which honors an individual, family or business whose generosity has enriched and improved the community over the years.

“We are extremely saddened to lose a visionary such as Chuck, whose incredible energy, charisma, strength and intelligence defined our business,” says Charlie Bosselman. Chuck Bosselman’s children, Charlie Bosselman and Brandi Bosselman Lofing, will continue to lead the company as president and attorney, respectively. “Chuck based his business decisions on the foundations of pride, cleanliness, fun, integrity and friendliness, and has earned his reputation by hard work, sweat and commitment to the customer. Chuck’s vision of being the best was hard-earned and well-deserved. Chuck did it all to ensure the company’s success – from cleaning restrooms, changing tires, hauling fuel and whatever else has been needed to be done, and would never ask an employee to do what he wasn’t willing to do himself. He will be sorely missed.”

A celebration of Bosselman’s life will be at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11, at Trinity United Methodist Church, 511 N. Elm, Grand Island, Neb.; the family requests no flowers. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Chuck D. Bosselman Memorial Scholarship and sent to the Bosselman Corporate Headquarters at 3123 W Stolley Park Road Ste A, Grand Island, NE 68801. Condolences may be sent to www.giallfaiths.com.