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Zupans Markets owner dies after NE Marine Drive crash

UPDATE • Former Fred Meyer employee John Zupan started his own store in the mid-'70s
by: Courtesy of MCSO Edy Porfirio Reynoso-Ramirez

John James Zupan, founder of Zupan's Markets, died Tuesday from injuries he suffered Monday evening in a head-on collision on Northeast Marine Drive.

Zupan, 66, a Vancouver, Wash., resident, started his grocery store in 1975 after working for decades in the grocery business, first with Sheridan Produce and then 11 years as a manager with Fred Meyer.

His son, Mike, took over the company in 2000. It has stores on West Burnside Street, Southeast Belmont Street and Southwest Macadam Avenue. A fourth store is planned this fall in Lake Oswego.

The head-on collision happened at about 7:52 p.m. Aug. 29 on Marine Drive between 138th and 148th drives. It closed the busy road for several hours.

Portland police arrested Edy Porfirio Reynoso-Ramirez, 32, after he tried to flee from the accident. Ramirez has been charged with second-degree assault, failure to perform the duties of a driver at an accident, driving while intoxicated and reckless driving. He was booked into the Multnomah County Jail.

Investigators said Ramirez was speeding in his four-door 1998 Honda Civic east on Marine Drive, driving erratically and passing other vehicles prior to the crash. When the Honda was east of 138th Avenue, it crossed the center line and collided with a 2009 BMW motorcycle driven by Zupan.

The collision sent the Honda rolling down a steep embankment.

Police said Ramirez tried to flee after the crash but was quickly captured by officers arriving at the accident.