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R.W. Dellenbach

Dellenbach Motors

Inducted in


Richard (RW) Dellenbach was born in Beardsley, Kansas. He served in World War II as a naval aviator and navigator. RW started his automotive career in a Nebraska parts department.

RW and his wife came to Colorado in 1948 so he could work in the Parts department at Fortino-Jackson Chevrolet in Pueblo. He then worked in service and as a sales manager. In 1952, RW was offered an opportunity to purchase the Chevrolet dealership in Fort Lupton. Six years later, he purchased a Ford store in Ogallala, Nebraska.

In 1960, he sold both stores and went back to Pueblo to Fortino-Jackson as the general manager. In 1965, RW, his wife and 11 children moved to Fort Collins, where he was a partner at the Chevy dealership. In 1996, he added Cadillac and Subaru.

In 1970, he bought out his partner; Dellenbach Motors has been in the family ever since. RW went to the dealership every day and was always aware of what was going on in each department. RW made his employees want to be the best they could be, and they always wanted to make him proud. RW was Colorado’s nominee for the 1986 TIME Quality Dealer of the Year award.

RW was very involved in many local charities, including the United Way, Boys and Girls Clubs and the Multiple Sclerosis Society. The family continues to support many non- profit organizations in northern Colorado, including the Cancer Center of Northern Colorado and Museum of Contemporary Art, along with many annual Downtown Business Authority events held in Fort Collins. RW felt the northern Colorado community had made Dellenbach Motors successful, so it was important to give back.

RW’s first and proudest accomplishment was his family. His four sons are all involved in the dealership, along with two daughters, five grandchildren and one great-grandson. They are carrying on his legacy by keeping the dealership a vibrant part of the Fort Collins community and employing more than 135 people.

RW felt that once the automotive business is in your blood, it stays in your blood.

R.W. Dellenbach
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