Stanley Grieb – Always the Farmer

Very young Stan

The Grieb family recently said goodbye to their, brother, cousin, father, uncle and grandfather, Stanley Grieb.

Stanley was born in Arroyo Grande on January 16, 1923.  He was the sixth of nine children born to Fred and Gertrude Grieb.  As the Grieb’s were a farming family, he learned to work hard at a early age. Stan also enjoyed sports where he worked equally as hard.

Horse shoe trophyAs an 8th grader, he joined the Arroyo Grande Men’s Horseshoe Team.  They played other men’s teams from San Luis Obispo, Atascadero, Paso Robles, and Santa Maria.  In high school he was the champion horseshoe player.

In addition to horseshoes, Stan was also good with the hoops. Stan joined the Letterman’s Club earning his membership in basketball.

Agriculture has always been his passion and took the leadership role of president and secretary of the Future Farmers of America.

One of Stan’s projects in FFA was raising a pen of three pigs having purchased the sow from Cal Poly. He competed at the Great Western Livestock show in Los Angeles.  Stan won second place for a pen of three pigs and second place for a single pig.

Young man StanStan graduated from high school in 1941 and began 25 years of farming, raising apricots, walnuts, artichokes and vegetables.

Stan and Lois weddingHe met Lois Buchen on a blind date when her sorority, Alpha Delta Pi, at the University of California at Santa Barbara, had a dance.

Before they were married Stan and Lois built their house in Arroyo Grande.  The concrete foundation was mixed and poured in one day by Stan’s brothers.  Lois was teaching school but came on weekends and cut all of the studs for the house (Studs weren’t pre-cut in those days.)

Stan and Lois were married on August 19, 1951. Two children were added to the family, Pamela and Randy. The family continued farming in Arroyo Grande.

Stan and family

During his farming years he was a 4-H leader, served as Arroyo Grande Farm Bureau Chairman, served on the San Luis Obispo county Grand Jury and was the Arroyo Grande Rotary Club Secretary.  Stan served as tree judge at Cal Poly for the Future Farmers of America annual State Convention.  He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Diamond Walnut Plant and Co-op at Goleta.  He was also a Alternate Director for Diamond Walnuts Central board of Directors in Stockton.    Stan designed  and built the first portable grower delivery and railroad shipping station for Diamond Walnuts.

In 1966 the family said goodbye to Arroyo Grande and Stan went to work for Sunsweet Dryers and Sunsweet Growers in Red Bluff, California.  Stan started out as the manager of the Sunsweet Prune Dryer in Red Bluff and Sunsweet Growers Field Representative for that area.  In 1967 Stan was transferred to the Sunsweet Prune Dryer in Gridley as Plant Manager and the family moved to Yuba City.  Stan managed the Sunsweet Prune Dryer in Gridley for 18 years.  During Stan’s last two years with Sunsweet he also worked as a Diamond Walnut Field Representative.  For Stan’s final two years of his career he worked full time with Diamond Walnuts as the Field Representative covering all of Northern California from Sacramento to the Oregon border and areas east and west of Sacramento.  He also worked with walnut receiving stations in Solvang, Paso Robles, Gilroy, and Oceano.

Stan designed and built a walnut sampler that was manufactured and put into operation at all locations where Diamond received walnuts from growers.  This was the first time that Diamond Walnuts had a uniform sampling system for growers’ walnuts.  Stan retired in 1988.

Stan and Lois later yearsIn retirement  Stan liked to spend his time in his yard, still the farmer, he “irrigated rather than watered”.  He was always tinkering with something .  With a mind to make things easier or better, he tinkered with and modified his bar-b-ques, trailer, and motorhome.  He loved to camp at Lake Tahoe and spent several weeks every summer at the lake.

About three years ago when his health declined he and Lois moved in with Pam. That is where he spent his final days.  In April 2016 he was buried in Arroyo Grande.

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