Charles "Chuck" Bundrant, one of the architects of the modern Alaska seafood industry and one of the sector's most influential executives globally, died Sunday at the age of 79.

Bundrant's life was the archetypal American dream: A college dropout who left for Alaska to seek his fortune, and went on to build one of the most powerful seafood companies in the world.

Bundrant founded Trident Seafoods in 1973 with partners Kaare Ness and Mike Jacobson, with a plan to harvest and process crab on the same vessel, a practice that had never before been done in the Alaska fishing industry.