Table grape industry legend Andrew V. Zaninovich died June 1. ( Courtesy Zaninovich family )

Andrew Zaninovich, a longtime grower at his family’s table grape company, has died.

Zaninovich died June 1. He was 91.

He lived in Delano, Calif., most of his life, working at Vincent B. Zaninovich & Sons (brand name VBZ), Richgrove, Calif.

“Andy not only passed on his knowledge and love of grape growing to generations after him, he passed on his love of life and zest for travel,” according to a statement from the family. “He avidly sought to learn about different growing techniques wherever he went in California, New Zealand, South Africa and France. The colleagues he befriended wherever he traveled enriched his family’s life.”

After graduating from Delano High School in 1945, he served in the Army in the Philippines. When he returned, he focused on the family business, according to the statement. He married Stella Lamat in 1964; she survives.

Other survivors include daughter Andrea and son-in-law Geoff Bland and two granddaughters.

A funeral mass is scheduled for June 14 at St. Mary of the Miraculous Medal Church, Delano. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to L.A. GOAL or to the maintenance/improvement of the Roman Catholic Church in Velo Grablie, Hvar, Croatia. Send checks to Stella Zaninovich, P.O. box 249, Delano, Calif., 93216.

 
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