Every fall would find the owner of the Quality True Value Hardware Store in Madison, a business Novotny bought from his parents in 2006, bringing in loads of ice melt in preparation for the inevitable slick sidewalks and driveways that are part and parcel of Wisconsin winters. The 50-pound bags would be stacked in front of the store, lying in heaps along its sidewalk, and around the building’s south side, into its small parking lot.

The store is still there but Novotny is not. He died in July 2017 from bone cancer, a condition he had been diagnosed with just six months earlier. He was 55, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

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