Real estate company retires with its owner

Friday, November 21, 2008 | 3:56 p.m. CST; updated 2:31 p.m. CST, Saturday, November 22, 2008

COLUMBIA — A business has closed its doors after 50 years of operating in Columbia. McRoberts & Company, a real estate operation owned and run by Andrew J. McRoberts, 85, has retired with its owner.

McRoberts started the business when he was 35, having previously taught history at Hickman High School. Soon after entering the real estate field, McRoberts decided to specialize in selling hotels and motels . It was a decision which meant big commissions and having little business to do in the city where he was actually based.

Over the years, McRoberts only sold one commercial property in Columbia, while selling most of his properties in the southern part of the country.

A few weeks ago, he decided to shut down his self-described "octagenarian outfit," which he was running with Dan Judy, another former teacher-cum-real estate man who is in his 80s.

Although the business that had been at Eighth Street and Park Avenue for more than 15 years will no longer move property, members of the McRoberts clan remain in real estate. The owner's son, Andrew J. McRoberts V, and daughter, Anne McRoberts, are carrying on the legacy at their own real estate companies in Texas and Missouri, respectively.

"Each property was interesting to us," McRoberts said, remembering his half-century of work.

The owner joked that he doesn't want people to think he's died or been put in "witness protection" now that his business is closed. He wanted Columbians to know that they can find him at the following address: Route 1, Box 115, Malta Bend, MO 65339.

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