Dec 21, 2009
Metrolina Greenhouses Founder DiesSource: Charlotte Observer, GPN reporting

Tom Van Wingerden, founder of Metrolina Greenhouses, was killed in a utility vehicle accident on the company’s property in Huntersville, N.C., on Saturday. He was 63.

Van Wingerden was an innovator in the greenhouse industry. “His legacy in the industry is broad,” his son Abe told GPN in an e-mail over the weekend. “From greenhouse innovation to labor-saving technologies like the transplanter, to putting the right people in the right place to succeed, to his willingness to finalize a succession plan in 2006 when he was still young. All of these will be remembered…he was years ahead of the norm.”

“Dad was the visionary founder, a constant inventor, a generous businessman, a missionary in Haiti, a great leader and most importantly, a great husband, father and grandfather to all of us in his family,” the family said in another statement released over the weekend.

Van Wingerden was born in Holland on Feb. 12, 1946. He immigrated to the United States in 1971 and founded Metrolina Greenhouses the following year. He sold the company to his children in 2006.

“Metrolina will continue to push forward, and we now dedicate our work in Dad’s memory as he would want it,” Abe said in his e-mail. “He would want none of us to be sad but instead remember the great life he had, and the wonderful memories each of us have had with him. Dad would also want his legacy to be the continued success of our company and the continued happiness of his family, especially the grandchildren he loved so much.”

His wife, Vickie, and six children, Art, Abe, Helen, Michael, Rose and Thomas, survive him. He also is survived by 14 grandchildren.

The family has asked that memorials be sent to:
Double Harvest–Haiti, Tom VanWingerden Memorial Fund
55 South Main St., Oberlin, OH 44074

For more information on the Double Harvest organization, visit www.doubleharvest.org.

Click here for more information from the The Charlotte Observer.




Latest Photos see all »

Lupine Staircase series (Green Fuse Botanicals)
IMG_0518 copy
IMG_0469 copy
IMG_1488 copy
IMG_1587 copy
IMG_1517 copy
40under40
GPN recognizes 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 who are helping to determine the future of the horticulture industry. These individuals are today’s movers and shakers who are already setting the pace for tomorrow.
MattFoertmeyer
Nelkin1
Foertmeyer-IMG_0879_56929c8233ca1
IMG_2403
Screen-Shot-2012-05-21-at-11-35-06-AM.png
jpg12076_568703049845380_1908830746_n_0
Burress Leanna
Scott-2.jpg
SylviaGM56

75 Applewood Drive, Suite A
P.O. Box 128
Sparta, MI 49345

616.887.9008
GPNJuly_Cover
Interested in reading the print edition of Greenhouse Product News? Preview our digital edition »

Get one year of Greenhouse Product News in both print and digital editions for free.

Subscribe Today »


Be sure to check
out our sister site.
website development by deyo designs