Pendergrass Son, Friend React to Bar Owner’s Murder


Family and friends remembered Joe Pendergrass on Wednesday, the man who owned Dusty Boots Saloon and Eatery in Rockford. Pendergrass was stabbed to death at the Advanced Medical Rehabilitation Center in Loves Park on Tuesday night. 

The alleged attacker is an acquaintance of Pendergrass’, named Roland Breault.

There’s been an outpouring of community support for the Pendergrass family as word of his tragic death spread.  He was a familiar face to many in the Rockford area.  The well-liked business owner was also a loving husband, father, and grandfather.

“We got together many times for Walter Larson golf outings, and many times he’d call me to host [the] event that he was a part of, just because he knew me,” said local radio personality Steve Summers.  “I loved that relationship that we had, just good friends all the time.”

Pendergrass is described as a man who would help a stranger, and a friend who was always there for his family.

“You know, that’s the hardest part for me is having to have that conversation with [my son] David and let him know that obviously his grandpa’s not here anymore,” said Matt Pendergrass, Joe’s son.

That loss is sure to be felt by those closest to Joe and others who knew him casually through his business, Dusty Boots.

“I loved the guy,” said Summers.  “I’m a better man for just knowing him.”

“He loved his wife. He loved us kids. He loved his grandkids,” said Matt.  “He’ll be greatly missed.”

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