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Peter Buck, whose 1965 $1,000 investment in a family friend’s Connecticut sandwich shop that now provided the origins of the world’s largest restaurant chain – Subway – has died. He was 90 years old.

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Buck, a nuclear physicist born in Portland, Maine, in 1930, died on November 18 at a hospital in Danbury, Connecticut, Subway said in a statement. The cause of his death was not disclosed.

Family friend at age 17 Fred DeLuca asked Bucky How can he earn some money to help pay for college? Buck’s answer? Open a sandwich shop. So in 1965, he and DeLuca opened “Pe’s Super Submarine” in Bridgeport, with the most expensive sandwich selling for 69 cents.

The two changed the name to “Subway” three years later and decided to turn it into a series by franchising – a move that would eventually make them both billionaires. Forbes estimated Buck’s net worth at $1.7 billion. Deluca died in 2015 at the age of 67.

CEO John Chidsey said in a statement that he was saddened by Buck’s death and credited the co-founder’s vision for helping Subway grow from a single store to “the world’s largest restaurant brand.”

“He was a shining example of a dedicated, practical leader and an integral member of the Subway family,” Chidsey said. “We are forever grateful for his countless contributions and I speak on behalf of all of us at Subway when I say that we will honor his legacy as we continue to build this incredible brand.”

Subway said it now has more than 40,000 locations worldwide, topping McDonald’s and Starbucks.

A Subway restaurant in Lansing, Kansas. (Getty Images)

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“We didn’t make any profit for 15 years,” Buck told The Wall Street Journal in 2014. “I always thought we’d get bigger and bigger, but I didn’t really have a definite number in mind.”

Buck graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, in 1952. He holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in Physics at Columbia University.

General Electric hired Buck in 1957 to work as a physicist in a laboratory in Schenectady, New York. He worked on nuclear power plants for submarines and ships of the US Navy. He later worked for United Nuclear in White Plains, New York, and Nuclear Energy Services in Danbury, where he made his home, according to an obituary prepared by his family.

He also did philanthropy, making significant donations to a number of organizations, including the Smithsonian Institution, for which he donated a 23-carat ruby ​​named after his late second wife, Carmen Lucia Buck, in 2004.

“Dr. Buck’s love for the East Coast, especially its vast forests, was reflected in the vast land he owned as owner. Tall Timbers Trust, In fact, he was one of the largest owners of timberland in Maine, with more than 1.2 million acres,” the family obituary states. Buck leaves behind his sons Christopher and William, daughters-in-law April and Hara, and grandchildren Sam, Emily, Oliver, Simon and James – and several members of the team he worked with at Subway. His love for Subway can always be felt by the thousands of franchisees, sandwich artists, suppliers and partners around the world.”