( Central American Produce )

David and Jean Warren, founders of Pompano Beach, Fla.-based Central American Produce Inc., have died.

David Warren died April 15, just a month short of what would have been his 103rd birthday, His wife of almost 70 years, Jean Warren, 94, died eight days before her husband, according to the family.

The couple founded Central American Produce in 1976.

David Warren helped pioneer Guatemala’s melon and vegetable exports, and was presented an award by Guatemala President Alvaro Arzu in November 2000. The award honored Warren as a “Tireless pioneer since 1972 to innovate, create, develop and involve thousands of Guatemalans in the export activity and in the knowledge of the world market.”

During a 2016 interview with The Packer, David Warren said he loved his company’s role in the business.

“To pack, ship and warehouse products, to get them to where they have great eating qualities and are very beneficial to people, in terms of health, what more fun could you have?” Warren said. 

His son, Micheal Warren, became Central American Produce’s president in 2002, but the family said David Warren continued to come to the office and provide support until last year.

“The qualities that my father and mother had that made them successful were resilience, persistence, and passion!” Michael Warren said in the statement. “They demonstrated this daily in business and personal life.”

Warren said his parents lived by the golden rule and helped people near and far achieve success in start-up businesses, educational pursuits and other goals.

“He cared about each and every person, that they would have opportunities to better their lives for the future,” Warren said of his father in the statement. “My parents were examples of how to live life and appreciate what is really important.“

David and Jean Warren are survived by four children: Wendy Warren, Jody Miller, Susan Drake and Michael, eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. 

A memorial for David and Jean Warren is being planned for this month, according to the family.