He was born in 1931 in Asheville, N.C., and grew up in Norfolk, Va. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1953, and shortly after married Claudette. After a short time with York Corp., Owens moved his family to St. Louis where he became the chief engineer for Sporlan Valve Co.
In 1970, he became a partner in Arizona Refrigeration Supplies (ARS), serving as president of ARS (now American Refrigeration Supplies) from 1970 to 1992. When he sold his interest in the company, he remained as chairman until he retired in 1996. Under his leadership, the company grew to 23 locations in five states.
Owens had two places he liked to relax — one was a ranch in Colorado and the other was an ocean-front cabin in Cholla Bay, Mexico. He loved family gatherings.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Claudette, four children, eight grandchildren, five great grandchildren, a sister, a niece, and nephews.
Publication date: 3/25/2013