Terrance W. Spencer, January 16, 1942~May 8, 2017
Terrance W. Spencer, 75, passed away peacefully May 8, 2017, after battling cancer for over 8 years. Born January 16, 1942, in Fayetteville, he graduated from Greenland High School, earned a business degree at the University of Arkansas, and joined the Fayetteville National Guard shortly afterwards. However, his life’s path was determined at 10 years old when he began working as a dishwasher at the small Mexican restaurant across from Drake Field. He moved up through the positions to be cook, and became its owner in 1968. In 1969 he closed the restaurant to manufacture his signature yellow corn tortillas and fried chips, which became Mexican Original Products, Inc., the third largest employer in Northwest Arkansas in the early ’80s. Terry’s ingenuity and persistence in spreading the popularity of the tortilla industry earned him recognition by the Tortilla Hall of Fame in 2010, and led to jobs using his food expertise for companies in Illinois, Nebraska and California after his company’s sale. His marriages gave him three daughters, Catherine (Rich) Hoster, Patricia Spencer and Connie Hicks, and seven grandchildren. His retirement in 2005 back to Arkansas led him to his loving companion, Susan Lushbaugh, who added to his family her son Douglas and her grandson. Susan was his tireless advocate as he was a warrior against cancer. Terry is survived by his daughters and two brothers, Donnie (Linda) and Stephen (Donna), and preceded in death by his parents, Wayne and Janelle, and two sisters, Donna and Janie. His many friends through the years are invited to join his family for a celebration of his life, beginning at the chapel of Fellowship Bible Church, 1051 W. Pleasant Grove Rd. in Rogers, on Friday, May 19, 2017. Visitation with the family will be available beginning at noon, then the service is at 1:00 pm. Interment follows at 3:00 at Mt. Olive Cemetery in Elkins. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Samaritan Community Center, 1211 W. Hudson Rd., Rogers, AR, 72756.
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