Stephen Jay Parker Obituary
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Date of Death:
Stephen Jay Parker passed away on Friday October 23, 2015 in a local hospital. He was born on April 15, 1953 in Broadstairs, England, to Shelly Malloy Parker & William J. Parker. As a child growing up in a military family, he lived in England, Morocco, Georgia, Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio.
Steve’s love affair with the restaurant business began at the age of 15. He learned from the ground up, starting off as a busboy and then a waiter at the Officers Club at Wright Patterson Air Force base. His desire to learn all aspects of the business provided the foundation for his life’s work. Upon completing his business degree at Miami University (Ohio), he joined Ground Round Restaurants Inc. and managed multiple units until becoming a Regional Manager. He then joined the Chi Chi’s Mexican restaurant chain, managing several large locations. This experience led to a corporate position in New Orleans with a competitor, Cucos. Steve moved to Fort Smith where he took over the local Cucos restaurant. He and his business partner Rick Card relocated it to 74th street. In addition to Cucos (now Joe’s Grill & Cantina) Steve and Rick were partners in California Grill, Richard’s Steakhouse and 91st Street Pub. Steve also owned restaurants in Jacksonville, FL, Shreveport, LA, and Jonesboro, AR.
Steve loved to travel, play tennis and pool, read, talk politics and debate current issues. His family will remember Steve as a person with a great sense of humor, a bright, inquisitive mind, the desire to follow his own path and a wicked Liar’s Dice player.
He is survived by four siblings: Sandy Parker (Windsor Mill, MD), Michael Parker (Tupelo, MS), Carol Ledbetter (Daphne, AL) and Lisa Lovell (Denver CO).