Jack Pandol Sr., former head of Pandol Bros. Inc., Delano, Calif., died Aug. 4. He was 87.

After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, he returned home to help his family with its farm in Delano, Calif. In 1946, he increased the farm’s output by selling grapes and wine, selling by direct f.o.b.s, and loading the nation’s first cross-country refrigerated truck.

Pandol served four years on the Produce Marketing Association’s board. A world traveler, he helped create the association’s international division.

He enjoyed cooking, according to a statement from the company, making food for various California political events, Public Diplomacy Agrobusiness luncheons, Boy Scouts of America Southern Sierra Council dinners, the Superb BBQ committee, and school and church gatherings.

In 2009, as chairman emeritus of Pandol Bros. Inc., he received the Bernardo O'Higgins Presidential Order of Merit from the Chilean government, the highest designation the Chilean government can give to a private individual. The Chilean Exporters Association and PMA also bestowed a lifetime achievement award on Pandol.

Pandol was credited with working to expand the grape category and raising awareness of Chilean grapes in the U.S.

“His actions say a lot about the growth of the Chilean industry and how the entire global network of countries is now trading,” said PMA President Bryan Silbermann, at the time.

Pandol battled Alzheimer’s disease, according to the statement.

Funeral arrangements are currently pending.

Jack Pandol Sr. dies at 87