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Meijer puts out video tribute; says chain will remain family run

The sons of the late Fred Meijer say the Walker-Michigan-based Meijer retail chain will remain “family-owned, family-run” in a video released Thursday.


“Because of our dad, Meijer will always be more than just a company,” Hank and Doug Meijer say in the video, “He was building something else all those years. He was building a family. One that is now 60,000 strong.” Meijer Corporation has about around 200 stores in the Midwest.

Fred Meijer was 14 years old when his Dutch immigrant father opened his first store in 1934. Fred Meijer was the first to introduce the concept of “one stop shopping” with groceries and a department store under the same roof. He died November 26thafter suffering a stroke. Fred Meijer was 91 years old.

“That’s what Meijer still is today, family-owned, family-run,” the video goes on to say. Hank and Doug Meijer has been co-chairs of Meijer for more than 20 years.

Meijer and his wife, Lena, contributed generously to a number of non-profit organizations in West Michigan. Several University buildings, a state park and a major heart center in Grand Rapids are named in his honor.

A fan of the arts, Meijer also helped establish the 130-acre Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park.

The video is for "team members, customers and fans of Meijer," Meijer spokesman Frank Guglielmi told The Grand Rapids Press Friday.“It was released late Thursday afternoon after employees had an opportunity to see it,” the paper reported.

The 2-minute-long video wraps up: “Customer centered, a competitive spirit, freshness and family values; that’s what we’re built on. That’s who we are. That’s who we’ll always be.”

Lindsey Smith is a Peabody Award-winning journalist currently leading the station's Amplify Team. She previously served as Michigan Public's Morning News Editor, Investigative Reporter and West Michigan Reporter.
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