ST. LOUIS — With great sadness, D&S Car Wash Equipment Company announces the death of Lawrence “Larry” F. Scheiter, according to a press release.

Scheiter was the founder of D&S Manufacturing Co., a custom metal fabrication, welding and assembly plant based in High Ridge, Missouri, the release continued.

With his partner, Scheiter began the company in 1972, capitalizing on the need for higher quality equipment designed for self service carwashes, such as booms, safes and coin meters, the release noted.

D&S was the first company to introduce an all (welded) stainless steel vacuum to the carwash industry and the first company to incorporate solid state timers in carwashing applications, the release added.

In the mid to late 1980s, D&S developed the D&S 5000, which was the carwash industry’s first and only rollover-type touchless automatic carwash system, the release stated.

Today, D&S is still known for quality and reliability, which is a cornerstone of the company, according to the release.

Scheiter had a long-standing career in the carwash industry that dated back to the early 1960s when automatic and self service carwashing became the new trend, the release added.

He was an engineer by trade and an unselfish, giving person who touched many lives, the release continued; he was also a pilot and collector who loved airplanes, cars and boats.

In 2004, Scheiter retired and sold the company to a private equity group, the release noted.

Scheiter entered into rest Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018 at the age of 79 after a long battle with kidney disease, the release stated.

He is survived by his loving wife Jan and many children, great-grandchildren and family, the release concluded.

Memorial donations may be made to the National Kidney Foundation, 1001 Craig Rd., Ste. 480, St. Louis, MO 63146.