Fresno gas station honors owner by selling cheap gas

FRESNO, Calif.

The Cardwell service station is located on Chestnut and Clinton. It's been there for more than 40 years.

So, when the owner died last week -- his family wanted to honor him---and his customers in a special way.

"It's better than what everybody else has. We'll take it, that's good. We're glad you guys came."

In the 43 years this East Central Fresno gas station has been in his family Doug Cardwell says business has rarely been this busy.

Starting at 8 a.m. drivers lined up to purchase unleaded fuel for the discounted price of $2.99 a gallon.

By 11:00 a.m. nearly 200 cars had already come through.

"Do you think it will last until tomorrow? You know, with the lines we've had here, we'll see how it goes," Doug Cardwell said.

Doug's father, Bill Cardwell owned the station and had been working here up until last week.

When the 83-year-old passed away on Monday from pneumonia, his family wanted to celebrate his life----by giving back to the customers he loved.

And for Bill--that meant taking the time to pump gas for people----as well as ask them about their day.

"It's been amazing support, how many people have been here 30, 40 years and they all you know, would come and visit with him and he would give advice, and they were all telling stories, so it was great," Carol Rudolph said.

The average wait time Saturday was 20 minutes. Some waited even longer after several pumps shut down from too much use.

Still, drivers say it was worth it--especially when the average price for unleaded fuel in Fresno stands at $3.39 a gallon.

"My husband and I have good jobs and the economy has just been killing us. So, it's been frustrating," Joanne Steele said.

"A lot of people, they go to the tank and they only put five dollars in because it's so expensive. And now, it's under three dollars, so that's a good thing," Roshelle Lee said.

A good thing---bill's family says they're more than happy to do knowing just how much it would mean to him.

"Oh, he would be proud. We're saying good bye. My sisters are all here. We're all helping."

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