Jerry Throgmartin, who was the executive chairman of electronic appliance family business HH Gregg, died on Sunday, 22 January at the age of 57.
The American retail company did not give the cause of death, but according to the Indianapolis Star, a local newspaper, he died of meningitis.
Throgmartin was the third generation of the founding family to head the business established by his grandfather in 1955. He joined the company in 1975 as a salesman and held a number of positions across HH Gregg, including district manager and director of advertising.
He worked his way to the top, succeeding his father, Gerald, as president in 1989. During Throgmartin’s tenure, he not only spearheaded a number of acquisitions, but also oversaw the opening of new stores – HH Gregg has retail outlets in almost 200 locations across 16 states in the US today.
The family head, who served as chairman and chief executive from 2003 to 2009, is also credited with taking the company through an initial public offering in 2007. Shares of HH Gregg, which had sales of $2.07 billion (€1.59 billion) in fiscal 2011, are traded on the New York stock exchange.
Throgmartin was known in Indianapolis, where the family business is based, for his charitable donations to causes such as cancer research. His son, Gregg, is executive vice-president and chief operating officer of HH Gregg, whose range of products includes DVD players, refrigerators, televisions and audio equipment.
HH Group traces its roots to a customer service company founded by Henry Harold Gregg and his wife Fansy. Second-generation Gerald and Don joined the business in the 1960s.
Throgmartin is survived by his wife, son, two daughters and two granddaughters.