Glenville, Georgia-based G&R Farms has announced the death of farmer, businesswoman and Vidalia Sweet Onion pioneer Pam Durrence Dasher on July 24 at age 79.
Mrs. Dasher was the co-owner of G&R Farms with her brother-in-law, Robert Dasher, a role she had held since 2003. She joined the business in 1962 when she married her high school sweetheart, Gerald W. Dasher.
Following her husband’s death, Mrs. Dasher assumed co-ownership and management of the company alongside her brother-in-law and continued in that capacity until her death.
Throughout the years, she worked alongside her husband and brother-in-law as they grew the farm and helped build what would become a year-round global sweet onion company.
Mrs. Dasher served as office manager of G&R Farms for many years. However, according to the company, it wasn’t uncommon to find her grading onions or doing any other job that was needed.
In addition to cultivating their farm, the Dashers also sought to cultivate a brand for sweet onions. They were the first growers to market sweet onions to supermarkets, cementing the popularity and success of the crop and their company.
They also traveled together, sharing the benefits of sweet onions and helped to secure the passage of the Vidalia Onion Act by the Georgia General Assembly.
“From the earliest of years, Pam was the backbone of the office, providing the structured support Gerald and Robert needed so they could focus on sales and production,” said Blake Dasher, CEO of G&R Farms.
“It was her unwavering support and quiet confidence that helped build the foundation that we continue to grow from today, and there’s no doubt she was a tiny giant among men.”
Mrs. Dasher was preceded in death by her parents and husband, as well as other family members. She is survived by her children, Paige Dasher Mulligan and husband Mike, and Gerald Walter “Walt” Dasher II and wife Anita; along with many grandchildren and other family members.
Funeral services will be held July 28 at Glennville First Baptist Church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Ogeechee Area Hospice at P.O. Box 531, Statesboro, Georgia 30459.