Gene Bruyette, a co-founder of Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, the investment bank that became one of the most prolific advisors on bank merger deals, has died. He was 90.

Bruyette died on Dec. 8, according to a statement from his family. A wake has been scheduled for Friday at St. Timothy's Church in West Hartford, Conn. A memorial service will also be scheduled for a later date at Mariner Sands Chapel in Stuart, Fla.

Bruyette founded KBW in June 1962 with partners Harry Keefe, a colleague from the investment firm R.L. Day, and Norbert Woods. Bruyette was the company's chairman and CEO from 1989 to 1991. He remained chairman emeritus following his retirement in 1991.

KBW grew to become one of the leading investment banks for the commercial banking industry. The firm was acquired in 2012 by Stifel Financial.

"Gene served as a constant reminder of the key values that are important to a leader, friend and person," Thomas Michaud, KBW's CEO, said in a statement. "He will be greatly missed."

Keefe left KBW in 1989 to start a hedge fund company, Keefe Managers; he died in 2002. Woods died in 1972.

Bruyette, who lived in Bloomfield, Conn., and Stuart, Fla., served in the U.S. Navy in World War II. During his professional life, Bruyette was a director of St. Francis Hospital in Hartford.

His family has asked that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Mariner Sands Foundation in Stuart and to the Presidential Fund at the University of St. Joseph in West Hartford, Conn.

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