Roy Pope’s Grocery Amazing History
Knowing customers by name is standard at Roy Pope Grocery. Perhaps this is one of the major factors that keep second and third generation customers depending on Roy Pope Grocery for their grocery needs. Since its establishment in 1943, Roy Pope Grocery has matured from a small grocery store that once shared a building with a washateria, shoe repair shop and dry cleaners, to a superior specialty grocery that maintains an old-fashioned way of service.
Roy Pope Grocery is rich with a history of dedicated ownership that extends from the employees to it’s customers. Founder Roy Pope employed John LeMond in 1947 to work in his produce and grocery departments. Following Roy’s death in 1967, Mr. LeMond bought Roy Pope Grocery and owned it until his retirement in 1990. Because Bob Larance was store manager for Mr. LeMond from 1975 to 1990, he and his wife Renee took this opportunity to buy-out Mr. LeMond and have continued to manage and own Roy Pope Grocery to this day.
Through three owners and 59 years of existence in the same location, Roy Pope Grocery has continued to operate under the same principals in which Mr. Pope started his business. “We have always taken pride in ourselves by finding products that our customers want,” says owner Bob Larance. “We have a large selection of imported and gourmet items that cannot be found in every grocery store. Even today, we search for small companies that produce very unique, exclusive products. Only the best will do for Roy Pope.”
Probably the single greatest test to the ability of the store came on December 23, 1970, when a fire obliterated Roy Pope Grocery. Under-insured and left with little to stand on, Roy Pope Grocery was revived with the help of loyal customers and community members. Tom Barnett, store manager for Neiman Marcus of Fort Worth during this time, gave Roy Pope Grocery space in Neiman’s for four months while Roy Pope Grocery was being rebuilt at its same location. Other fine people in the community such as Rose Pope and Stanley Marcus also helped lend a hand. All accounts receivable for Roy Pope Grocery were destroyed in the blaze. Checks from customers kept flooding in after the tragedy for amounts the customers felt they owed. Fortunately, most customers appreciated Roy Pope Grocery to such an extent that they included donations to help rebuild the store.
Today, 18 employees assist the Larance family at Roy Pope Grocery. The store continues to offer hand-selected produce direct from the farmer’s and wholesale market. The finest in Prime and choice cuts of beef, chicken, veal, lamb and exotic meats as well as a variety of cheeses are fresh for customer selection every day at Roy Pope Grocery. An outstanding selection of imported products for the gourmet connoisseur are an epicurist’s delight. Stop by for lunch or after work at the deli to select from their assortment of hot and cold delights. The delivery and will-call service available daily exemplifies their superior quality, service and the desire to fulfill customer’s needs.
Roy Pope Grocery has been very fortunate over the years to attract the finest, friendliest employees committed to excellence in service and knowledge of products. The grocery owes its success as the oldest family-owned grocery store in Fort Worth to its many dedicated employees; many of whom worked at Roy Pope Grocery for over 10, 20, and 40 years!
“Without our customers that desire only the very best in food quality, none of this would have been possible,” says Mr. Larance. “It is through this history that we continue to run our store as it’s heritage dictates.”