Arch West, The Creator of Doritos, Has Died at 97

Arch West created Doritos in 1964
Arch West created Doritos in 1964

Arch West, the inventor of Doritos, passed away on Sept. 20, 2011 in Dallas, TX at the age of 97. Arch West is the person responsible for you having to lick that orange paste off of your fingertips after you finish a bag of chips. If you really think about it, that is something we have all done. This man created something that created a common memory for us all. Just thinking about having to lick Dorito dust off of my fingers…well, it makes me smile.

I couldn’t find much online about Mr. West, except that he served as a lieutenant in the United States Navy during WWII, and before taking a position as a marketing VP with Frito-Lay in Dallas, TX, Mr. West worked in New York City on Madison Avenue.

According to the story on

…daughter Jana Hacker of Allen tells The Dallas Morning News the family plans on “tossing Doritos chips in before they put the dirt over the urn.”

Now that is awesome. I really think all funerals need to have something memorable and fun. Arch’s family is doing it right.

BTW I also learned a few things about Doritos today. It turns out that Doritos were the first tortilla chips to be marketed nationally in the United States. And the word ‘Dorito’ is close to ‘doradito’, which means ‘little golden’ in Spanish.

RIP, Arch West.