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When Kansas City was designed and built, each neighborhood had its own little retail area. Usually it was a little corner grocery, a dry cleaner and perhaps a “drug store.” In 1951, Bill McGonigle, founder of McGonigle's Market after serving as a bomber pilot in WWII, was starting a family and trying to make a living. He was working as a food salesman, calling on local grocery stores in the Kansas City area. One of his customers was Martin’s grocery, located outside the city limits way out on 79th Street between State Line Road and the old Ward Parkway. Mr. Martin mentioned one day to Bill that he was considering relocating his store across the state line in the new development of Leawood, KS. Bill saw this as an opportunity to go out on his own and negotiated with Mr. Martin to purchase the existing business. At the time, the building was divided in half and Dittmar’s Drug Store shared the space. Bill opened McGonigle’s Food Store on May 5, 1951. He always said that he opened on the 5th and then it rained for forty days and forty nights. (it was the year of the big flood). Despite the rain and being out in the country, McGonigle’s began to thrive. Now offering high quality meats, seafood, as well as catering services in Kansas City, MO and the KC metro.
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