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Fruit grower-packer Bill Warmerdam of Hanford dies

William (Bill) Warmerdam, a fruit grower-packer-shipper who founded Hanford, CA-based Warmerdam Packing in 1965 with his wife, Audrey, died Jan. 8. He was 80.Bill-Warmerdam

Mr. Warmerdam was admired as a leader in the fruit industry for continually embracing innovation and new technologies in the field and packingshed. He erected the company’s first packingshed on Grangeville Boulevard in Hanford in 1969, designing and fabricating much of the packing equipment himself. The operation was moved to its Excelsior Avenue location in 1977.

In its early years, Warmerdam Packing primarily grew peaches, plums and nectarines. Today, the company grows and packs plums, kiwifruit and cherries, and is one of the larger cherry growers in the San Joaquin Valley.

Remembrances in Mr. Warmerdam’s name may be sent to The Parkinson Alliance, P.O. Box 308, Kingston, NJ 08528 or parkinsonalliance.org; St. Agnes Hospice, 6729 N. Willow Ave., Suite 103, Fresno, CA 93710; or St. Vincent de Paul Society, 115 W. 5th St., Hanford, CA 93230.