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Issue Date: Vol. 54, No. 3, March 2014, Posted On: 2/17/2014

Irvin G. Gardner Dies; Attended The First Bulk Vendors Meeting

Hank Schlesinger
TAGS: vending operator, bulk vending, vending business, vending industry history, Irvin George Gardner, Irvin Gardner obituary, Gardner & Lose Co., Shively KY vending company, Mr. Gardner, National Bulk Vendors Association, World War II veteran, Allied Command Forces, Cindy Vance

LOUISVILLE, KY -- Irvin George Gardner, former secretary and treasurer of Gardner & Lose Co. (Shively, KY), died on Feb. 1. He was 90.

"Mr. Gardner," as he was affectionately known to friends and clients, was a charter member of the National Bulk Vendors Association, and is known for attending the NBVA's first meeting. He was a World War II veteran, member of American Legion Iroquois Post #229 and graduate of the University of Louisville.

During the war, Gardner was part of the Allied Command Forces in the European Theater, serving in London. "He was in charge of the mimeograph room serving under General Dwight D. Eisenhower," recalled his daughter, Cindy Vance. "At that time, only eight copies at a time could be made for top secret work."

Gardner started in bulk vending in 1949 with only eight peanut penny machines. "A man of his word, he always paid his bills as soon as he received them," his daughter said.

Today, Gardner & Lose is one of the longest-running privately owned bulk vending operations in the U.S. Its routes serve locations in Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana and Ohio.

Irvin Gardner is survived by his wife of 63 years, the former Angie Fisher; daughter Cindy Vance (Tim), grandchildren Kelly and Tyler Vance and great-grandchildren Blake and Bailey Vance; a brother, Leroy Gardner (Wilma); and a sister, Helen Gardner Becker.

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