Oscar J. Abello, the former president, CEO and chairman of "K" Line America, died on Sunday, July 8, in Pembroke Pines, Fla., where he had retired.
Abello, who was 72 at the time of his death, retired as chairman in 1999, a position he held for a year after having served as president and CEO in the years since the company's formation in 1990.
"K" Line America was formed following a restructuring of Kerr Steamship, which had served as "K" Line's U.S. agent since 1923. Abello, a native of Cuba, joined Kerr in 1963 after graduating from college in Cuba and moving to the U.S.
Abello served in various positions at Kerr between 1963 and 1990, moving from coast to coast while assuming more responsibilities within the company.
He lived and worked in Chicago, Seattle, New Orleans and New Jersey before assuming the presidency of Kerr Steamship, the position he held when "K" Line America was formed.
Abello established a national operations service center in Richmond, Va., which opened in 1996 and became a model for centralized customer service functions created by container shipping lines.
From that move followed the decision to relocate the company's headquarters from New Jersey to Richmond in the fall of 1997.
Abello also served as president of Rail Bridge, "K" Line America's domestic rail subsidiary.
He also served as chairman of Seven Seas Cruise Line for three years and, following that company's merger with the Radisson Hotel group's cruise business in 1994, he served as co-chairman of Radisson Seven Seas Cruises for another three years.
Abello is survived by his wife Maria Elena, his sons Oscar and Manny, and his daughter Rose. His funeral service will be held in Pembroke Pines on Thursday.
Contact Peter T. Leach at email@example.com.