DANVILLE, Va.-William S. ``Pete'' Cahill, founder of Cahill Manufacturing Co. and the inventor of the retreading industry's first spray cementer, died May 14 at his home in Danville after suffering a massive heart attack March 5. He was 88. Mr. Cahill began his career in the tire business when he took an after-school job making section repairs at a tire shop in South Hill, Va. He went on to become a foreman for a Pontiac dealership and eventually opened his own auto dealership, Cahill Motors, in 1940.
After World War II, he began experimenting in the Hartman Tire Co. retread plant next door, where he developed the first spray cementer for retreads, for which he received a patent. Mr. Cahill would go on to develop more than 25 machines for the retread industry, including tread builders and buffers.
In 1950, he opened Cahill Manufacturing, a maker of retreading equipment and materials, and sold his car dealership in 1953. Mr. Cahill was still active as a retread industry consultant when he died.
Mr. Cahill received the American Retreaders' Association Industry Leadership Award in 1980 and was inducted into the ARA International Tire Retreading & Repairing Hall of Fame in 1989.
He is survived by son Robert Y. Cahill Sr., who has served as president of Cahill Manufacturing since 1985. His wife Pat and son William Jr. preceded him in death.