Longtime Longview Businesswoman Passes Away

The founder of a popular East Texas grocery store has died. "Arleta Skinner", established "Skinner's" in Longview more than 50 years ago, and it's been a household name ever since.

"She was the heart and soul of skinners" said granddaughter Alison Skinner.

Anyone who's lived in Longview for awhile knows Skinner's market, and the woman who ran it for years. Friends and family are remembering Arleta as a pioneer.

"She didn't take no for an answer she drove a hard bargain, but she wanted everything to be right" said son Arnold Skinner.

Skinner passed away yesterday at the age of 89. Today, her family is reminiscing about her wonderful life. She worked tirelessly from the moment she and her husband opened the first Skinner's in 1950, and was the driving force behind what made her success, trust and a warm smile.

"You always knew where you stood with her you never had to 'well I wonder what grandma thinks' cause she's going to let you know and that's what i liked about her" said grandson Stephen Skinner.

She had survived the depression and, through it, developed a hard charging work ethic, even raising five sons while running the store. Her greatest pride was her family, and they believe she'd be happy with what she's passed on to them.

"She wanted all her children grandchildren and great grandchildren to be trustworthy" said Alison.

Although the Longview chain was sold by the family years ago, they continue to own the store in Lake Port.

Bob Hallmark reporting.  bhallmark@kltv.com