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Founder of Tarantino Foods dies of COVID-19

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Posted at 11:19 AM, Apr 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-09 11:19:34-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The original founder of Tarantino Foods on Bailey Avenue has died of COVID-19.

Family members say 99 year-old John P. Tarantino Sr. tested positive for the virus Tuesday. He passed away on Wednesday evening.

7 Eyewitness News profiled Tarantino Foods three weeks ago when the pandemic first hit WNY. The company was boxing up food that would otherwise go to waste, and selling it to the community for half price.

"I'm very happy we could serve the public who need the food, and sell some of this inventory that we have," Tarantino Sr. said at the time.

Tarantino's family says he seldom missed a day of work in his 99 years.

"He would even come in on Christmas Day," one family member wrote.

During an interview with 7 Eyewitness News, Tarantino said he didn't remember another time like this in his lifetime--other than the Great Depression.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.