Murray Harpole, retired chairman, chief executive officer and co-founder of Pentair Inc., died suddenly on Monday, May 16. He was 89.

Harpole, one of Pentair's five founding partners, started the company in 1966 to manufacture research balloons. Harpole was named Pentair's first chairman and CEO that year, remained in this position for 15 years, and served another five years as chairman, ultimately retiring from the board in 1991. By that time, the company was a diversified manufacturer with annual sales of $1.2 billion and more than 8,000 employees. Harpole was integral to building the foundation of Pentair's current global presence.

Randall Hogan, Pentair's current chairman and chief executive officer, comments, "Murray built Pentair from the ground up. Among his many significant contributions, his passion for conducting business with the highest ethical standards remains a cornerstone value at Pentair. Although times have changed since Murray first wrote our company's code of ethics, the business principles he put in place have not. He leaves a lasting legacy at our company; the legacy that we live by in 'Winning Right.'"

In 1992, Harpole wrote Living the American Dream: Pentair Inc. - The First 25 Years, a book detailing Pentair's humble beginnings, key milestones and ultimate success.