Archive for Friday, November 5, 2010

Founder of Señor Stan’s dies of liver cancer

Lawrence man was creator of regional Señor Stan’s salsa brand

November 5, 2010


Stan Schneck (right) with Bob Bruce, each holding a Hen of the Woods found in October, 2008.

Stan Schneck (right) with Bob Bruce, each holding a Hen of the Woods found in October, 2008.

A Lawrence man who built a cooking hobby into a regional salsa brand died Monday of liver cancer.

Stan Schneck, 51, created Señor Stan’s salsa, which is bottled today in a commercial kitchen in Baldwin City and available in grocery stores stretching from Manhattan to Des Moines to southern Missouri.

He met Christine, the woman who would become his wife, while she was working at Checker’s grocery store more than a decade ago while he was delivering salsa.

“You buy a jar, and if you don’t like it, I’ll pay you double for it,” Christine Schneck remembered her husband telling her.

Since Stan was diagnosed with liver cancer this summer, Christine has been essentially running the business, which will continue to operate after Stan’s death.

She recalled how he began the business in 1996 after a friend’s mother gave him some pointers on how to make good salsa.

“Stan was loved by so many people. It was just amazing,” Christine said. “All of the people he grew up with were still friends with him and still hung out.”

Though cooking was his true passion, he also enjoyed fishing and mushroom hunting.

Sherry Kay, president of a local mushroom hunting club, said Schneck would frequently join the group on forays for interesting mushrooms. Though some in the group were interested for mostly scientific purposes, Schneck frequently had other interests in mind, Kay said.

“He was more on the eating side,” she said, but frequently led the rest of the group to his favorite mushroom spots. “We’re going to miss him a lot.”

Services are scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, 601 Ind. The family suggests memorial contributions to the Johns Hopkins Liver Transplant Program, which may be sent in care of the funeral home.

His mother, Donna Schneck, said Stan frequently found success growing up, on the Lake Forest swim team, and as class president his sophomore and junior year at Bonner Springs High School. He also wrestled and played in the jazz band. His success continued into the salsa business, she said.

“He was always on top of whatever he did,” she said.


Chris Bohling 7 years, 6 months ago

This made me sadder than I expected. His Tio Loco salsa is my favorite salsa to have with chili and burritos.

denali 7 years, 6 months ago


RIP Senor Stan. Thank you for some of the best salsa I've ever eaten.

riverdrifter 7 years, 6 months ago

Fine salsa. Stan was a great guy. To the stars, Stan. Try the extra hot. Great flavor and it'll warm your cockles -and everything else.

giveitback 7 years, 6 months ago

I remember the good old days back in 6th grade Stan. Southwest grade school. RIP. Till we meet again ol Buddy.

Bucker00 7 years, 6 months ago

Oh no! RIP my old friend, Stan helped me out considerably when I was younger. Will never forget what he did for me. My deepest condolences to his wife (who I never met) and his brothers, as well as his mother.

Michael Stanclift 7 years, 6 months ago

I bought a jar once because of the name, I bought it again and again because of the salsa.

Met Stan a few times when I worked at Checkers. Great guy, sorry to hear about this.

Kirk Larson 7 years, 6 months ago

So sorry to hear. I buy Sr. Stan's all the time. I usually get both the Hot and the TioLoco and mix them about 5050. That's about right for me. Condolences to his family. Sounds like a nice guy who did well locally.

Editorator 7 years, 6 months ago

My condolences to Senor Stan's family, although many of us who love the salsa consider ourselves part of a larger family of his. Lady, may you have the means to continue the salsa as long as you can.

Bryan Anderson 7 years, 6 months ago

Alas, Senor Stan, the salsa man. Many a tasty dish at my humble abode was helped by your tasty salsa.

JNguyen 6 years, 10 months ago

I know its an old article but I've loved his XXHot Salsa. It was the only thing in the stores that had real spice. I went looking for some today and could not source some anywhere. I decided to Google it as to where I could get some and I find this. Definitely sad. R.I.P. even if its late.

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