Otto Jech, executive vice president of George’s Inc., has died at the age of 86.

Jech started his career in the poultry industry by working with his brother’s in their father’s coop building business. In 1951, he began working for George’s taking care of a chicken farm for company founder C.L. George. He delivered chicks, worked in the hatchery, was a broiler serviceman, and oversaw the cattle operation during his early career with George’s.

Throughout the years, he worked alongside Luner and Gene George whenever needed and was involved in every operational are of the company.

Jech was named executive vice president in 1980, and he continued to oversee and assist with operations and expansion of the company until his death.

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“Otto’s knowledge and his valuable insight throughout the years were vital to the growth of our company. He was involved in all aspects of our operations, and his talent and guidance will be greatly missed,” said Gary George, chairman of George’s.

Carl George, co-CEO of George’s, said: “Having been hired by our founder, Otto had an incredible depth of knowledge about the history and the operations of this company. He was instrumental to our company’s success.

Charles George, co-CEO, added: “Otto was a man of integrity and he was highly respected. We will miss his leadership and friendship greatly.”