By  on February 15, 2008

NEW YORK — William D. "Bill" Modell, chairman of Modell's Sporting Goods, who led the growth of his family-owned sporting goods chain from four stores to 136 full-line units, died of prostate cancer Thursday at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. He was 86.

Born in Brooklyn's Manhattan Beach section, Modell began his retailing career at the age of nine when he sold produce door-to-door in his neighborhood. He attended Peekskill Military Academy and New York University.

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