Susan Donelson (Abel Office) - I didn't know Jim for very long but am grateful for the
short time that I did and am constantly reminded of Jim's influence and long-time
presence at the Abel Oil office. I remember my first week at Abel Oil, Jim explained
about different things that were taken into account to determine gas prices at the
stations. Although it may not pertain to my job directly, he still took the time to explain
and would distribute articles that pertained to our industry. He took pride in his
occupation. It showed in his success and helped Abel Oil and its employees thrive. I
would hope that all companies would be that lucky to have a leader such as Jim.
Kane and Vickie (Firestream) -  We did not know Jim very well, but we know the
people who worked with him and what a great friend and mentor he was to all of them.
I love the poem on the home page!  I hope you find comfort in remembering him this
week of his 70th birthday!  We’ll be thinking of all of you who cared so much for him.
Sue Taylor (Bowling Green Store) - Dear Jim, I hope you are celebrating your 70th
birthday with loved ones, where you are at in the ever after.  We wish you were here
to celebrate with us.  We sure do miss you!  I think of you when I look out at the
shrubs in front of the store.  I think of the pride you took in making sure our
landscaping was nice and pretty.
Teresa Marquardt (store supervisor)-- I had the pleasure of meeting Jim in May of
1978 when he first interviewed me for a job at Palmyra. Now 30+ years later I'm still at
Abel Oil Co. It used to be quite the joke between us that he didn't hire me first time
around. Jim was such a pleasure to work around. You always count on him to do and
follow through with anything he said he would. I always told him I give him all the credit
for making me the manager I was. He set a standard of working that he expected from
not only you but from himself also and always lead by example. He taught and showed
you what teamwork was all about. Jim was always a highly respected gentleman and
had a knack of bringing out the best in you. On the personal side Jim was always one
of those quiet people that never tried to bring any attention to himself and then about
the time you'd almost forget he was there he pop up and have a comment that left
you chuckling. We had many good times over the years and it's sad to think he's not
in that front office any longer. We lost a great president.a team member and a
wonderful person the day he passed. I'd like to think he is up there still guiding us
everyday as we continue on. I miss you Jim. Happy 70th birthday. Jan,30,2009
Randy Anderson (Abel's Office)I, like the others that have written before me, have
many fond memories of Jim Redhage. I did not grow up in the convenience store
industry. I learned it and I learned it from a man that devoted his life to the industry
and Abel Oil Company. Since my prior employment was with Abel’s outside public
accounting firm, I had the unique opportunity to work with Jim as a “vendor” as well as
an employee. What I later discovered was Jim treated everyone the same- with
respect, honesty and dignity regardless of the relationship. Jim was a great mentor to
me and I will be forever influenced the ideals he personified. When he talked, I
listened and when I talked he listened. No one worked for Jim Redhage, you worked
with him. No one in the company was greater than the cause. There were numerous
times that things would pile up (crap) and I would get frustrated with the process.
Usually it was Jim that I would turn to for guidance ( a place to blow off steam). Jim
would help me work it out  (have a can of Natural Light). Jim had one phrase I will
never forget and probably use from time to time. Many of these conversations (b*%
#ch sessions) ended with “..you know Randy, if it was easy everyone would be doing
it”
My cousin, Jim Redhage, was born 5 years before me.  Our mothers were sisters and we went to family
reunions together on the Meramec River.  The young girl in the attached picture with french braids is me; as
usual, my cousin Jim was busy teasing me and doing his best to give me a hard time.  His mother had this
picture cropped and made into a top for Jim's cookie jar.  My turn to tease and annoy Jim came when he was
16 or 17, and I was visiting his family. His parents decided he should take me to the drive in movies.  You
can imagine his delight at being stuck with a girl who was 11 or 12!  We remained friends and in close
contact.  Jim's life revolved around Abel Oil, and the animals he loved so much, his dogs and the creatures
who came to lunch or dinner at the feeder he maintained at his house.  Every time a new station opened, Jim
was sure to send me a picture.  In 1989, Jim sent me his picture taken at the Midcontinent District's
Islamorada, Florida fishing trip, honoring its Jobbers-of-the-Year.   In May of 1996 I picked up my aunt and
uncle (brother to our mothers) and took them to Bowling Green to visit Jim.  We stopped in at Abel Oil
headquarters and visited a couple stations.  Several times Jim wrote a note on his hand, to remind him that a
light bulb in a station needed replacing, etc.  He was always at work!  Jim and I attended the opening of the
Super 8 Motel in Bowling Green.  He could not have been prouder of that new business if he personally
owned it.  Nor could he have been any prouder of Abel Oil and its employees, all of whom he considered to
be his family.  I miss him, I miss sending him dog jokes, I miss getting an email from him or a phone call,
telling me about his dog's latest exploits, that a station had gotten flooded and how it was going to be made
better than it was before, and how progress was being made on opening new stations.  He told me he was
not planning on retiring, he loved his job.  My cousin Jim was very shy, a quiet guy, he cared about many
things and many people.  Most of all, he cared about being the best person he could be, doing the right
thing.  I think he succeeded.

Sue McLaughlin