Industry pioneer Rosemary Tucker dies at 87

March 22, 2011

Rosemary Tucker, who co-founded Tucker Tire Co. in the Los Angeles area, died March 20. She was 87.

Tucker was born in Butler, Pa., in 1924. She served in the Army Air Corps during World War II. At the end of the war, she was stationed at Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino, Calif., where she met Don Tucker. They were married in 1945 and had six children: Tom, Terry, John, Mary, Jim and Jeanie.

In 1956, Tucker and her husband started Tucker Tire Co. in Covina, Calif. In 1965, she became the sole owner of Tucker Tire.

She was awarded many special honors while she ran Tucker Tire with her three sons. In 1972, she was featured on the cover of Modern Tire Dealer for an article about women in the industry. She was chosen Small Business Person of the year in California in 1978. She finished third in the nation with that honor, and President Jimmy Carter presented the award to her. She also received a Distinguished Service Award for helping start the first hospice in Covina.

She also served on the board of directors for Inter-Community Hospital in Covina. She was also a big part of the Covina Chamber of Commerce, and served as vice president for the Southern California Tire Dealer Association. She volunteered a lot of her time at Inter-Community Hospital, and also was named to the Covina Hall of Fame.

Children Tom and Jim run Tucker Tire in Covina, while John opened up another shop in Laguna Niguel (which was featured in an MTD article in 2009).

Tucker is survived by her children, 15 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held for her on Friday, March 25, in Fallbrook, Calif.