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“They called me every day for three months at precisely 10 a.m.,” Chun told the Star Tribune. “Finally, their persistence prevailed. They told me that they didn’t have enough toy designers. They said that if I came to Minnesota, they would take care of me. And they did — they put me up in the Lafayette Club. I thought that was great until I discovered that I had to wear a three-piece suit every night to go to dinner.”
From Tonka, he shifted gears into the restaurant business.
Diner Randy Roskowiak, a Delano businessman and longtime sports car collector who counts a 2010 Shelby Super Snake among his prized possessions, met Chun in the late 1980s and became a close friend.
“John wanted me to bring in some pictures [of my cars] one day,” Roskowiak recalled. “I brought in a whole box, and he’s telling me about his work for Shelby. I’m thinking this can’t possibly be real. In this small town, this would be one of the biggest pieces of news.
“It was probably the best-kept secret in Delano. He didn’t say anything to anybody. “
In late 2010, Roskowiak and Chun traveled together for a big Shelby shindig in Las Vegas, where the company has its headquarters, and Roskowiak appreciated seeing Chun get his due amid the hundreds of collectors and employees.
“He was such a humble, loving man,” Roskowiak said. “I don’t think I’ve ever known anybody in my life who was so humble.”
Chun’s survivors include his wife, Helen; son Kevin; and daughters Marsha and Linda. Services have been held.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482