2008 HALL OF FAME WINNER Valentine Decker (1847 - 1937) A German immigrant born in Baden, Decker came to the United States at the age of twenty-one in 1868 as a journeyman sausage maker. He went to work as a butcher for his uncle in Troy for ten dollars a month. Shortly after his marriage to Johanna Schaeffer in 1873, he established a retail butcher’s shop at 512 West High Street in Piqua. He built his own slaughter house in 1887 on east end of East Ash Street next to the Great Miami River. In 1898 he established the Val Decker Packing Company. Decker greatly enlarged the packing plant 1903 and got out of the retail side of the meat business. Decker had four sons that joined him in the meat packing business, Louis F., George H., Carl F. (died 1916), Walter J, and William J. Decker remained active in the management of the plant until ill health forced his retirement in 1936.