Subway Founder Fred DeLuca Has Died

The Brooklyn-native opened the store that would go on to become the world's largest fast food chain when he was 17

Fred DeLuca was diagnosed with leukemia back in 2013.

Subway founder Fred DeLuca passed away on September 15. He was 67 years old.

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, DeLuca was diagnosed with leukemia in 2013 while traveling to different franchises. More recently, in June 2015, DeLuca’s sister Suzanne Greco took over Subway operations as the new president.

DeLuca founded Subway in 1965 when he was just 17 years old. He was given a $1,000 loan from family friend Peter Buck (the first shop was actually called Pete’s Submarines) to open the sandwich shop in Bridgeport, Connecticut to help pay for college expenses. The original menu featured sandwiches like the BMT, named after the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit, and Snak subs, which we know today as 6-inch sandwiches. DeLuca and Buck turned the business into a franchise in 1974. Today, Subway has more than 26,000 U.S. restaurants and 44,000 stores worldwide.


DeLuca was born in Brooklyn, New York on October 3, 1947 and leaves behind a wife, sister, and son. He had a net worth of $3.5 billion.