YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – One of the founders of Arby’s has died.
The restaurant chain announced the death of Leroy Raffel, 96, on its Facebook page Thursday.
The “RB” in Arby’s stands for co-founders, the Raffel brothers, who launched the brand in 1964.
The first restaurant actually opened in the area on US-224 in Boardman. It had 10 seats and only about 20 parking spots outside. The restaurant was different from others at the time that served hamburgers in that it served only roast beef sandwiches. The idea caught on, however, and the business quickly expanded with a number of chains throughout the U.S.
The Raffle brothers were from New Castle, Pennsylvania, where their father owned a hotel and restaurant with a bar.
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Leroy visited the area in 2014 to reunite with some of his former employees and reminisce about the first Arby’s.
At the time, Leroy told WYTV that he hoped that they would remember their original concept, which was “high quality, take good care of customers” and “treat everybody nice.”