A.J. Foyt Racing Mourns Loss of Ken Hendricks
WALLER, TX December 21, 2007--It is with great sadness that we at A.J. Foyt Racing have learned of the death of Ken Hendricks, the founder, chairman and chief executive officer of ABC Supply Co., Inc. He had sustained a massive head injury after falling at a construction site at his home Thursday evening and died during emergency surgery at Rockford Memorial Hospital early Friday morning. He was 66. Funeral arrangements are pending.
"I am still in shock," said A.J. Foyt upon hearing of the tragedy. "Ken was a terrific businessman and a hard worker but much more than that he was a great guy who meant a lot to a lot of people. He was a man whose handshake was as good as a 50-page contract. They just don't make them like that anymore. We had a lot of fun when we were together.
"I am so sorry for his wife Diane and all their kids--I've met them all because they were all involved in the business in one way or another. For this to happen at Christmastime just makes it so much worse because his family was so, so close--and so big, because he thought of his company and the people who worked for him or with him as part of his family. I still can't believe he's gone."
Hendricks was a visionary entrepreneur who started out as a contract roofer and became the head of the country's largest, privately-owned roofing supply business, approaching $3 billion annually in sales. The persona of ABC Supply, he was involved in a variety of businesses that sparked his entrepreneurial spirit as well as a backer of many education-based and charitable programs in his local and global community.
Spectacular though he was in business, and more so because he didn't complete high school, Hendricks will be remembered for the incredible relationships he forged throughout his life. As he followed his own dream of success, he created opportunities for others to follow theirs as well. Indeed, the theme of the Company's year-long celebration of its 25th anniversary this year was Live the Dream.
He is survived by his wife Diane and seven children (five of whom are employed in the family business), and 14 grandchildren.
ABC Supply is the sponsor of A.J. Foyt's No. 14 Indy car which will again be piloted by Darren Manning in 2008. ABC Supply has sponsored Foyt's race team since April, 2005.