60-year-old business gets new owners
The free popcorn isn’t going anywhere and neither is the store, but the owners of True Value in Ronan have sold out.
“We will stay part of this community, but it’s time,” Norma Granley said of her plans to retire from the business with husband Gary Granley. “We’ve been part of this since 1972, and we’ve enjoyed being part of peoples’ lives.”
The business started as a family venture in 1955 by siblings Shirley and Bud Hanson with the help of their spouses Susie Hanson and Herman Granley at the former Main Street location. They called their business Hanson and Granley Gambles and sold hardware, dry goods and clothes.
The Hanson couple eventually left the business but the name remained. In 1972, Gordon, Audrey and Gary Granley become co-owners. Lute Thingelstad and Judy Granley Thingelstad also joined the business. They changed the name a bit from Gambles to True Value but left the Hanson and Granley names. Norma Granley also joined the team. She said her husband Gary was involved with the business long before he became an owner.
“He started sweeping floors when he was 14,” she said. “After college and Vietnam, he decided to join the family business.”
In the late ‘90s, they moved the location to Highway 93, which is where it is now for more space and parking. The merchandise at the store changed through the years to include plumbing, paint and electrical. The dry goods were moved out many years ago.
And last month, the business changed hands — although the new owners, Beverley and Richard Osterwyk, are still family on Norma’s side of the family tree. Richard is Norma’s nephew.
“We helped move the store twenty years ago,” Beverley said of their involvement in the family business. They also helped with a few other things until they decided they’d like to try owning it, and they have a few plans for the business including the name change to Ronan True Value.
“We are going to remodel in January,” she said, which includes making room for horse supplies and more pet items.
Change has helped the small business last for 60 years.
“We want to keep customers shopping locally instead of going to the big box stores,” she said, adding that small business is important to the community. But to keep customers shopping locally, the store is continuously changing the inventory to provide what people need.