The produce industry recently lost one of its finest with the death of Rick Antle, president/CEO of Tanimura & Antle produce grower/shipper based in the Salinas Valley of California.
Rick, who died April 14 after a short battle with cancer, was 61. He is survived by his wife Tonya, his mom, Sue Antle, his sons, Brian (Amanda) Antle, Jeff Antle, Anthony Pavich, his daughter, Natalie (Eric) Drobny, and grandchildren, Cameron and Spencer Antle. He is also survived by his siblings and many nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Life Ceremony will be held at the Tanimura & Antle headquarters on Friday, April 27 at 2 p.m. In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests that donations be made directly to The Rick & Tonya Antle Community Foundation Fund (www.cfmco.org/AntleFund – 2354 Garden Road, Monterey, CA 93940) to support Rick’s favorite charities, including the Salvation Army of Salinas, CA, and Yuma, AZ.
With more than three decades of service and leadership within T&A, Ricky was known for his innovation and foresight and recognized for his many achievements. He and Tonya were recipients of United Fresh Produce Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.
The Tanimura & Antle website announced his passing with this loving tribute: “Rick was the embodiment of ‘larger than life’ and his legacy will always live on. He had a big personality and an even bigger heart. He loved and absolutely mastered the art of adventure – on the mountain, the water, the air, and of course on the farm. Skiing, boating, flying, and farming took up most of his life, but people always came first. Family, employees, and friends regularly describe him as a fun-loving, work-hard-and-play- harder kind of guy. He was thoughtful, magnanimous and a respected mentor.
“Through hard work, perseverance, and leadership, Rick is the epitome of a true industry icon. He followed in the Antle family tradition of leadership and innovation, and helped propel the produce industry forward for decades. He was a fearless captain, a true visionary, a selfless leader and a revolutionary risk-taker.”
Our heartfelt condolences to the family.