LENEXA, KS -- Charles Anthony Hanna died on April 22 at his home here after a long illness. He was 57.
His company, The Hanna Group, recently celebrated three decades of vending industry involvement. Hanna and his brother, Michael, founded the business in 1976 as a full-line operation and later expanded into vending machine and related equipment sales, industry consulting and financing.
Hanna produced a variety of educational resources for vending industry professionals over the decades. He authored The Vending Industry -- History, Trends, Secrets, Opportunities & Scams, and published The World's First Vending Machine Price Catalog.
Hanna's wife Linda and daughter Tiffany, who worked alongside him at the helm of the family business, will continue to run it. "Charles thoroughly enjoyed the industry, and helping others get into it -- and helping them avoid scams," Linda told VT. "We've been married 33 years, and in vending for 32 of them." The organization "misses our head honcho," she added, "but I know he's still guiding us from up there."
Hanna spent his early years traveling between his family's homes in Jamaica, his birthplace, and Lebanon before arriving in the United States in 1973. He settled in Kansas, where he earned his bachelors degree in business, met and married Linda, became a U.S. citizen and entered the vending industry.
Actively involved in his community, Hannah was a member of the Lenexa Chamber of Commerce, Heart to Heart Organization and the Johnson County Rotary Club. He won many awards for his work on behalf of these organizations.
In addition to his wife and brother, he is survived by daughters Tiffany Hanna and Krystal Fry; grandson Owen Charles Fry; and sister Janet Suleiman.
Donations in his memory can be made to Coins For Cures, 11944 W. 95th Street, #295, Lenexa, KS, 66215, a nonprofit organization that Hanna and his daughter, Tiffany, established for families affected by cancer. It provides financial assistance, tangible necessities, support services and informational guidance to cancer patients and their families. It has also set up a nonprofit program for bulk vendors who place a Coins For Cures sticker on their machines and donate a small portion of the collections to the cause.