Craig Whitten had recently sold his business and moved on to a new challenge when he died unexpectedly Oct. 17 at his home in Bainbridge, Ohio.

Whitten, the longtime owner of North South Produce, Chillicothe, had sold the assets of the wholesale company to Columbus-based DNO Inc. earlier this year and taken a job with DNO. He was 55.

Since joining DNO, Whitten had been managing his North South accounts and working with DNO’s concessions business. He also was a volunteer fireman in the area for more than 20 years.

“It’s a big loss,” said Alex Dinovo, vice president of DNO. “He was a good guy on top of being a really hard worker.”

Whitten is survived by his wife Melody. The couple marked their 29th wedding anniversary in September. Other survivors include his mother, Phyllis Whitten of Bainbridge; three children, U.S. Army Major Shane (Katherine) Whitten, of Hope Mills, N.C., Anthony (Tyler) Whitten, of Bainbridge and Tisha Lynn (Roy Oakes) Whitten, of Chillicothe; grandchildren, Valerie, Isabella, Cole Patrick and Kroy Patrick; mother-in-law, Laura Van Bibber, of Chillicothe; a sister, Carrie (Rick) Penrod, of South Salem; and nephew, Donald (Amy) Penrod, of Columbus.