Robert “Bob” Dearduff, 79, a baking industry lifer and racecar enthusiast, passed away suddenly on Sept. 18. Mr. Dearduff started his baking industry career right out of the US Air Force when he joined the Kroger bakery in Indianapolis as a mechanic. He later moved back to his hometown of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and went to work at Perfection Biscuit Co. — also known as Aunt Millie’s — as a maintenance manager.
In 1976, Mr. Dearduff moved to Daytona Beach, Fla., and worked at Merita Bakery in Orlando, Fla., as a maintenance manager and then onto Fedco Systems in Odessa, Fla., as a field service manager. For years after Fedco, he ran his own business that supported bakeries throughout central Florida with machine parts and component machinery, as well as service.
Mr. Dearduff is survived by his four children, including Jeff Dearduff, who is currently corporate director of baking and snack, The Austin Co., Cleveland, and has also worked in the baking industry for 40 years.
“My dad always said, ‘Whatever you do, make sure it is straight and square.’ This related to life as well as constructing something,” Jeff Dearduff said.