Danforth “Dan” Richardson, an Indian River citrus grower, died Dec. 17.
Richardson, 95, remained highly active in all aspects of the citrus industry for more than 40 years and was inducted into the Lakeland-based Florida Citrus Hall of Fame in 1992.
The 20 year member and former president of the Vero Beach, Fla.-based Indian River Citrus League, Richardson was chairman of Vero Beach-based Gracewood Groves, Gracewood Trading Co., and Gracewood Fruit Co. LLC, one of Florida’s oldest and largest citrus packinghouses. It closed in 2006.
When Richardson joined Gracewood in 1946, the company had four employees and packed from 160 acres of citrus.
At its peak during the 1990s, Gracewood packed 1.5 million cartons of fresh grapefruit a year from 20,000 acres.
Richardson was also president of the Punta Gorda, Fla.-based Florida Citrus Production Managers Association and was a former chairman of the Bartow-based Florida Citrus Commission.
He was remembered as a large community philanthropist whose Richardson Family Foundation and other organizations benefited community causes.
“He was a longtime member and chairman of various organizations, and was broadly recognized for his contributions both in membership and leadership not only in the citrus industry, but within his community,” according to the hall of fame.
His wife, Marge, died in 2009. Survivors include three daughters, nine grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
He graduated from Pelham, N.Y., high school and attended Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pa., before serving in the U.S. Army during World War II.
Visitation is scheduled for Jan. 8 at the Vero Beach Country Club with interment planned the following day.
The family suggests memorial donations be made to the Gifford Youth Activities Center or the Scholarship Foundation of Indian River.