Thomas Ricketts, chairman of Standard Federal Bank and the man most closely identified with its success, died Tuesday after a brief battle with abdominal cancer.

Mr. Ricketts, 66, joined the Troy, Mich., thrift in 1956 after graduating from the University of Michigan law school. He became president in 1973 and chairman in 1981. Last year he negotiated the sale of $15.8 billion-asset Standard Federal to ABN Amro North America Inc., a subsidiary of the Dutch banking giant. That deal is expected to close May 1.

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