Robert Greunke, 92, a restaurant owner whose cafeterias served up homestyle fare, died of pneumonia Tuesday in Hospice of Northwest Ohio, South Detroit Avenue.
For decades, Mr. Greunke of South Toledo was part of Greunke's Cafeteria, the downtown business first run by aunts and a sister. He built and opened a cafeteria in 1954 on West Central Avenue in the Colony district.
"He liked visiting with the customers and feeling that they were having a good time and enjoyed the food," daughter Laraine Hardy said. He was the menu maker, and his aim was to offer a good variety of food people liked, prepared as they might at home, she said.
The family cafeteria opened about 1922 in the Nicholas Building downtown - later known as the National Bank Building and, most recently, Fifth Third Center. It was known in early years as Linck's Cafeteria - Anna Greunke Linck was one of the principals. His brother, William B. Greunke, took ownership in the late 1930s, and in 1941, it became Greunke's Cafeteria.
Mr. Greunke's brother, Howard, helped run the downtown cafeteria, his wife said. That was sold in 1983 to Christine and Jim Wilson, Henry Linck's daughter and son-in-law, and became Linck's Too. It was in the National City Bank Building when it closed in 1999.
He was a graduate of Scott High School and attended the University of Toledo.
"He would have been a good businessman no matter what he chose to do," his daughter said. "If he said he would do something, he did it. He had determination, strength, and endurance."
Surviving are his wife, Gladys, whom he married March 6, 1940; son, Martin; daughters, Susie DiSalle, Laraine Hardy, and Carol Herebic; 14 grandchildren, and 20-great-grandchildren.