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Restaurant Business

Bill Lenox Of Bob’s Steak and Chop House Died Last Friday

Our restaurant community has lost a great restaurateur.
By Nancy Nichols |

Sad news today. Bill Lenox, the affable owner of the Bob’s Steak and Chop House in Plano and co-owner (with Omni Hotels) of the Bob’s brand, passed away last Friday. He was 70 years old. He is survived by his wife Marilyn and sons Matthew, Nathan, and Jason Lenox.

Lenox was in Vail with his wife Marilyn. The couple owns a time share condo there and Bill’s son Matthew lives in Vail. According to Bill’s oldest son Jason, the couple and Mathew and his girlfriend had just finished a remarkable meal at Almresi in Vail. “His last meal was fabulous,” Jason says. Later that night, Bill suffered a heart attack in his sleep.

Bill Lenox was born in Boston and grew up in New Jersey. He has deep ties in the Northeast. His grandparents lived in Cape Cod. “That was my dad’s happy place,” Jason says. Bill acquired a stake in Anteks Home Furnishings in 1989. (It is now owned by his son Jason). He was a regular at the original Bob’s on Lemmon Avenue and became friends with then-owner Bob Sambol in 1993. Bill eventually invested in Sambol’s restaurant. When Omni acquired the brand, Bill became a co-partner.

“He was a great partner,” Bob Sambol says. “One that I wasn’t smart enough to appreciate until we weren’t partners. I will forever be grateful to him for upholding the integrity of the Bob’s brand after I left.”

Bill was certainly an interesting man. Michael Mooney profiled Bill in October 2015. “He was definitely a one-of-a-kind guy,” Jason says. “For some, he was an acquired taste that not everybody acquired. People either liked him or they didn’t, but nobody could say he wasn’t a great guy.”

Bill Lenox was a great guy. He will be missed.