(Nov. 12) Nick Zaninovich, a fixture in California’s San Joaquin Valley table grape industry for more than a half century, lost his battle with Parkinson’s disease Nov. 7, just two weeks after his 87th birthday.

Born and reared in the Dinuba, Calif., area, the death of his father forced Zaninovich to forego his college education. After serving in the Army Air Corps during World War II, Zaninovich and his brother, Andrew, founded A&N Zaninovich, Delano, Calif., a table grape and citrus grower-shipper.

“We were competitors, but we were very good friends,” said George Caratan, owner of Anton Caratan & Son, Delano. “He was a fine gentleman, a very honorable person.”

Survivors include his wife of more than 60 years, Anna; three daughters; four grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Funeral services are scheduled for Nov. 13, at St. Francis Catholic Church, Bakersfield, Calif.

Table grape leader Zaninovich dies at 87
Nick Zaninovich