Joseph Saul, 83, longtime Club member passed away on May 4, 2004. Joe was husband of the late Margaret who passed away in 1993. He is survived by sons Joseph Jr., Richard and daughter Marie Walsh, nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Joe Saul wore many different hats in his long career with Jewel Food and Osco Drug up until he retired from Osco in 1982. He began in the produce department at 50th and Austin in Chicago, Illinois and concluded as the person Osco store managers relied on when they had any accounting questions or problems. Many “Country Osco” managers called Joe “Mr. Osco”. Connections contacted several Osco folks who had worked with Joe and present their recollections below. We know Joe had many Osco friends and we apologize for those not included.
It was my pleasure to work with Joe Saul over many years in the Melrose Park, Franklin Park, Hillside and later in the Oak Brook office. Joe embodied a unique combination of crusty disciplinarian enforcing expense control standards while simultaneously providing a sensitive and caring service for people in stores and the office. Store managers often remarked at how Joe would chew them out for failing to follow procedures, but they also said he was one of the most responsive and service oriented person from the office. As our company continued to grow, we were most fortunate to have the talents, sense of urgency, and commitment of Joe Saul. I speculate that there may be policies and procedures in place today at Albertsons that originated from Joe Saul. He was an inspiration to all of us, and he will be missed by his colleagues.
Joe Saul, our good friend and teammate, was admired by all. He was a manager’s best resource. When we wanted something done, or a solution to a problem in the accounting area, we always called Joe. We depended on Joe.
Lou Frantzen, while driving between stores, lost his hat. Lou sent in his weekly expense account to Joe and listed one hat lost - $15.00. Joe denied the claim saying“We don’t pay for hats”. The following week, Lou sent in his weekly expense report with a note attached “Joe, the hat is in this expense report but you can’t find it”.
There are no words that can express what a great guy Joe was and the tremendous contribution he made. Thanks Joe. We all loved Joe and know that he is still keeping people happy and doing a great job for his Maker.
Editor's Note: Lou Frantzen confirmed the “hat story” and told us that Joe was the person his managers went to when they had a problem. “You could always depend on him”.
Dick Cline acknowledged one of Joe’s stories that he had personally “trained” Dick at the Jewel office located at 3617 South Ashland Avenue in Chicago on the intricacies of accounting. In fact, Dick went so far as to say “Joe was my right hand and guardian angel:. Few realize what an impact Joe had on Dick’s career, when Dick came from 85 degrees California weather to 15 degrees below zero Chicago by lending him a winter coat! Dick told us that everybody knew Joe and he was your fried whether you were president or the janitor. “Dependable as the day is long”, Dick continued, “You could always count on Joe”.
Mike Radke told us “Joe really cared for the people”. Mike summed up with a statement with which many Osco folks wouild concur: “Joe had a heart of gold”.
Dan Baranick was one of those managers that Joe took good care , so much so that Dan’s comment was “Joe Saul was a stalwart person”.
Tork Fuglestad told us Joe was responsive to the store maangers; requests and that he considered it a privilege to do so. Tork said Joe considered Osco "like family" and he was there to serve.
Pete Schliesmann, Osco treasurer, was Joe’s first assistant for several years. One year Pete ased Joe to be in the office at 11:30 for is annual employee performance review. When Joe arrived, Pete told him they were going out to lunch to do the review. Pete drove to Wrigley Field, pulled out two tickets and told Joe “this is your evaluation”/ If Pete had asked, we’re sure Joe could have named all the Cubs second basemen for the past fifty years.
Leo Tarpley worked with Joe in the Jewel accounting department during Joe’s early years and remembered Joe well. Joe was “as solid as a rock”.