Bob Knight, middle, in 2015, celebrating the 35th anniversary of his purchase of Todd’s Big Star. His son, Clay, left, is owner of Todd’s, and is joined by store manager Joey Cole.
Bob Knight, the longtime owner of Todd’s Big Star, died Sunday.
The store’s posted on its Facebook page earlier today, “We are sad to say that Mr. Bob Knight passed away last night while on a trip with his family. Please say a prayer for all the Knight family during this time. Bob will be greatly missed by his family, friends and all of us at Todd’s Big Star. Rest in peace Boss.”
Arrangements are incomplete at this time.
The store on Main Street, well-known for its customer service and its meat department.
In a 2015 interview marking the 35th anniversary of his purchase of the store, Knight said, “If you come in here, I hope you’re greeted at least five or six times. It’s about treating your customers the way you want to be treated.”
“We’ve got people here who have worked 10, 15, 20 years or more,” Bob said in that interview. “We’ve got really good people here who want to take care of the customer – that’s how you stay competitive.”
Knight bought the store in April 1988 with his wife, Nancy, and business partner Danny Smith and his wife, Violet.
Danny Smith died in March 2015.
Knight also officiated high school football games.
Bob Knight got his start in the grocery business in the early 1960s, where he learned to cut meat at Page’s Supermarket. After a three-year stint with the U.S. Marines, he went to work at Kroger. Then he went to work at Todd’s in 1977.
Todd’s Big Star was purchased by James and Francis Todd from Joe Sharpe in 1952. It wasn’t far from where the current store is now, and it measured 7,000 square feet. The Knights and Smiths bought Todd’s in 1980, and 10 years later moved it to 1400 W. Main St., where it more than doubled in size, to 17,000 square feet.
Smith later took ownership of the Big Star in Okolona and sold it in 2013. Bob Knight took full ownership of Todd’s in 2004.