Robert Lee Clinton Ruckriegel, 85, Jasper
Robert Lee Clinton “Bob” Ruckriegel, 85, of Jasper, died Friday, June 11. He was born in Jasper Jul y 18, 1935, to Clarence and Esther (Braun) Ruckriegel, He married Lovella Mary Sendelweck September 13, 1956, at St. Paul’s Church in Haysville.
Bob attended the Ackerman one room schoolhouse before graduating from Jasper High School in 1953. Seeing the need for a good 24 hour restaurant in Jasper, the Ruckriegels opened Jerry’s Restaurant in 1964. With friend and business partner Dave Buehler, and the opening of this single location, a restaurant company was formed. It would eventually be known as BR Associates with hospitality units in six states (Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Illinois, New York, and Florida). In 1986, Bob was recognized by the hospitality industry as the sixth largest multi-concept private restaurant group in the nation. Following in their father’s footsteps, sons Al and Sid started their own restaurant company operating over 50 units. In 2014, while celebrating 50 years in the restaurant industry, the Ruckriegels combined both companies to form SERVUS. Today, SERVUS, Inc. is a real estate holding company.
Bob served on many boards including Dubois County Tourism Commission, German American Bancorp, Kentucky Wesleyan College, Northwoods Good Samaritan, Junior Achievement, Jasper Planning Commission, Long John Silver’s Advisory, and Jerrico. He received the Ernst and Young ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award as well as numerous ‘Franchisee of the Year’ awards. He was named a Distinguished JHS Alumnus and ‘Good Citizen’ by the Lincoln Heritage Boy Scouts. In 2015 he was an inaugural inductee to the Dubois County Business Hall of Fame. He was recognized as an ‘Indiana Sycamore’ and a ‘Kentucky Colonel’ and he and his wife received the “Key to the City” of Jasper, which they claimed meant the most to them since it left a positive impact on their hometown.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Lovella Ruckriegel; two sons, Al Ruckriegel and husband David Adams, Terre Haute, and Sid Ruckriegel (Andrew Rand), Peoria, Illinois.
In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by two brothers, Alfred and Clarence Ruckriegel, one sister, Dorothy McNeely; three step-sisters, Margie Kalb, Shirley Humbert, and Mary Lou Zehr; one step brother, John Schott; and step-father Ed Schott.
Friends may call from 2-6 p.m. Tuesday at the Becher-Kluesner Northside Chapel Jasper and from 9 to 10 a.m. Wednesday at St. Paul’s Church. In lieu of flowers memorial gifts can be made to the Dubois County Humane Society, Northwood Retirement Community, or St. Paul’s Church. Funeral services at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the church with entombment following in the Fairview Cemetery Mausoleum.