WORCESTER, Mass. — Memorial services are scheduled to take place here today for Frank Sleeper, the founder of general merchandise wholesaler Imperial Distributors, who died last Thursday in Ocoee, Fla.
According to the company’s website, Sleeper, a native of Worcester, was 25 years old when he launched the business in 1939 with a second-hand delivery truck and fewer than 100 cases of such items as toothpaste, shampoo and aspirin. He supplied local grocery stores with a homemade cabinet to display the products, which the stores could not obtain from traditional grocery wholesalers.
His son, Michael Sleeper, joined the company in 1964 and was named president and chief executive officer in 1973.
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