In 1934, a fifth child was born to J.W. and Bonnie — Dave Longaberger. Early in life, Dave had three strikes against him. His family was economically disadvantaged, he stuttered so badly people had difficulty understanding him, and he had epilepsy in a time when the condition was not widely understood.
Dave's liabilities did not stand in the way of his ambition, however. As a youngster he worked in a grocery store, shoveled snow, delivered papers, mowed grass and hauled trash. He ran the projectors at the local movie house too. Because Dave was always making money from one job or another, his family called him the "25-cent millionaire."
At age 21, Dave finally graduated from high school. He began his career by driving a bread truck for several years for two different bakeries. From 1961-1962, Dave served in the U.S. Army.
In the early 1960s, his first daughter, Tami, was born, and Dave grew eager to take the many lessons he had learned over the years and put them to work for his own business and family. In 1963, when Harry's Dairy Bar in Dresden came up for sale, Dave and his wife bought it. The restaurant had two booths, two tables and eight stools. Later, Dave purchased the defunct A&P Grocery in town. He remodeled and expanded the building, and opened the Dresden IGA Foodliner. As always, Dave worked very hard during those years, and between both businesses he earned a solid living for his family, which now also included younger daughter Rachel.
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