The Desert Sun:

Ed Hackbarth, co-owner of Schlotzsky’s sandwich shop in La Quinta — and founder of Del Taco — has been involved in the food services industry since 1954 when he became manager of Taco Tia, a taco stand in Barstow.

A year later, he bought into the business and in 1961 Hackbarth opened his first Del Taco restaurant. He started franchising the business in 1966.

It was first suggested that he call his new restaurant Casa del Taco.

“I said, ‘oh, that’s too long,’ so I shortened it to Del Taco,” Hackbarth said.

He sold the franchise in 1977, but held on to his two original Del Taco restaurants — in Yermo and Bakersfield — that he continues to run today. Continue reading this story.

Photo: Denise Goolsby / La Quinta Sun.