By Bob Weaver

It was an inviting restaurant, next to the highway surrounded by a real Ohio farm.

It was a stop we frequently made in the 1960s, traveling back and forth from college, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Farmer Evans frequented his own establishment back then, greeting his customers with a personal touch, not unlike the demeanor of farmers that are connected to the earth.

My memory of him will be of that demeanor, friendly, joking and grateful.

The 12-stool establishment served a country breakfast that couldn't be beat, including the farm's own sausage.

It's owner, Bob Evans has died at the age of 89.

Evans sausage surged to being a national product, following some simple jingles proclaiming "Bob Evans, down on the farm."

It started with the same he served to truckers in his tiny little establishment.

That original restaurant became the cornerstone of a chain that bears his name at 590 locations, with more than one billion dollars in sales last fiscal year.

Evans was being treated for pneumonia at the Cleveland Clinic when he died.