Gary Parker, 64, the secretive founder and majority owner of Center Oil, died Saturday after a skiing accident in Beaver Creek, Colorado. He was 64.

He founded G.P. & W Inc. in 1986. It does business as Center Oil Co.

The St. Louis-based company distributes refined petroleum products and owns interests in storage and terminal facilities.

Center Oil reported revenues of $4.8 billion last year.

Parker served on the board of  World Point Terminals Inc. until 2008.

He was a founder of  Reliance Bank and sat on the board of Reliance Bancshares Inc.

The Center Ethanol Company LLC, also founded by Parker, owns a 54 million gallon ethanol plant with rail and barge access on the Mississippi River, located in Sauget, Illinois, according to Forbes.

Ralph Casazzone, an oil trader with G.E. Warren Corp., was named president of Center Oil, the company said.

His company and family didn’t release any details about his accident.

Kara Bettis, the coroner for Eagle County, Colo., said Parker suffered trauma injuries and later died at a Denver hospital, the St. Louis Post Dispatch said.

“In a statement, Vail Resorts, a resort company, said only that the Beaver Creek Ski Patrol had received a report of an unresponsive man about 11 a.m. Friday on a lower section of Beaver Creek. Paramedics began life support and transported him to a local hospital, which sent the injured man by ambulance to Swedish Medical Center in Denver.”

Before founding Center Oil, Parker worked for five year at Koch Oil Co. of Wichita, Kansas

He joined Apex Oil in 1976 and was executive vice-president for 10 years, directing all light oil operations for Apex and its subsidiary, Clark Oil & Refining Co., the Post Dispatch said.

Parker earned an undergraduate degree in business administration from Wichita State University.

He’s also listed as an independent director at Green Plains Renewable Energy, Inc.

Survivors include his wife, Karman, and the couple’s six children.


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