CLEVELAND — Samuel L. Glazer, co-owner of the company that revolutionized American mornings with the Mr. Coffee drip coffeemaker, has died at age 89.
The funeral home that handled the arrangements said Glazer died of complications from leukemia March 12 at the Cleveland Clinic. Services were held March 14 at Berkowitz-Kumin-Bookatz Memorial Chapel in Cleveland Heights.
Glazer and his North American Systems business partner, Vincent Marotta Sr., hired engineers to develop an automatic drip coffeemaker for use at home. The company introduced the Mr. Coffee coffeemaker in 1972 to compete with older percolator and less-tasty instant coffee methods.
Mr. Coffee became a huge success. A corporate online history says that within three years Mr. Coffee was the top-selling coffeemaker in the U.S. The brand also got a big boost from its longtime pitchman, slugger Joe DiMaggio.
The partners sold North American Systems in 1987 for $182 million.
Glazer was born in Cleveland and served in the Army during World War II. He lived in suburban Beachwood. Over the years, he was involved in many business ventures, including developing shopping malls and housing.
Glazer enjoyed giving friends coffeemakers. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported that on one occasion a winter vacation neighbor in California, late-night host Johnny Carson, got his fill of Mr. Coffee coffeemakers. “Please, Sam, no more coffee machines,” Carson said.
Survivors include his wife, Jeanne, and a son, Robert.