Robert Gilway Van Dine

In Memory of Robert Gilway Van Dine

Robert Gilway Van Dine (82), loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away on July 27, 2020.

Robert was born on January 13, 1938 in West Orange, New Jersey to Roy and Frances Van Dine. He was a graduate of Villanova University and held a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Pepperdine University.

He married Mary Beth Palmer on February 10, 1968, having proposed to her 11 days after their first date.

Robert co-founded and served as Chief Executive Officer of Mill Creek Natural Products. He was also Co-Founder, Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Executive Committee of St. Ives Laboratories Corporation. Robert was one of the co-founders and the original Chairman of the Board of Malaga Savings Bank. Robert was also a principal/director at Pacific Radio Group.

Among his many civic and community responsibilities in Southern California, Robert served as a Trustee for the Archbishop’s Education Foundation and Chairman/Director of the Los Angeles World Affairs Council. Papal honors were bestowed upon him as a Knight in the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, one of the highest honors available to a Roman Catholic, and as a Knight of the Holy Sepulchre, Rank of Knight Grand Cross. Robert was a true patriot, having proudly served in the U.S. Army, and had a distinguished record of public service, receiving 14 appointments including Honorary Consul-General of the Republic of Singapore in California.

“Bob” enjoyed sailing and riding Harley Davidson motorcycles with his wife. He flew his single-engine plane “Spirit of St. Ives” from New York to Paris.  Robert was a member of the Bohemian Club, the California Club, the Commanderie de Bordeaux, Confrerie Des Chevaliers du Tastevin,, Il Cenacolo Dulcamara and a member of the Order of St. Hubertus.

Robert was a friend to many and lived life with intention. Robert was an amazing storyteller, a creator of conversation, and was a lover of travel, wine, and building unique homes with his wife. He embodied the entrepreneurial spirit and enjoyed passing lessons to his children and their children. “RG” loved to entertain, and to know him was to love him. `

Robert is survived by his wife of 52 1/2 years, Mary Beth Van Dine; daughter Sabrina Smith and son-in-law Douglas Smith, and their children Cammie and Connor; and son Sean Van Dine and Ren Oshiro, and their children Sean and Terra.

A Celebration of Life is planned for 2021. Robert had a passion for fundraising for the Catholic Education Foundation, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, which provides tuition assistance for low-income students. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Catholic Education Foundation at https://cefdn.org/ or to the Cerna Foundation, in Robert’s name, at cernafoundation.org, to fund research and treatment for Interstitial Lung Disease.

Robert Gilway Van Dine (82), loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away on July 27, 2020.

Robert was born on January 13, 1938 in West Orange, New Jersey to Roy and Frances Van Dine. He was a graduate of Villanova University and held a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Pepperdine University.

He married Mary Beth Palmer on February 10, 1968, having proposed to her 11 days after their first date.

Robert co-founded and served as Chief Executive Officer of Mill Creek Natural Products. He was also Co-Founder, Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Executive Committee of St. Ives Laboratories Corporation. Robert was one of the co-founders and the original Chairman of the Board of Malaga Savings Bank. Robert was also a principal/director at Pacific Radio Group.

Among his many civic and community responsibilities in Southern California, Robert served as a Trustee for the Archbishop’s Education Foundation and Chairman/Director of the Los Angeles World Affairs Council. Papal honors were bestowed upon him as a Knight in the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, one of the highest honors available to a Roman Catholic, and as a Knight of the Holy Sepulchre, Rank of Knight Grand Cross. Robert was a true patriot, having proudly served in the U.S. Army, and had a distinguished record of public service, receiving 14 appointments including Honorary Consul-General of the Republic of Singapore in California.

“Bob” enjoyed sailing and riding Harley Davidson motorcycles with his wife. He flew his single-engine plane “Spirit of St. Ives” from New York to Paris.  Robert was a member of the Bohemian Club, the California Club, the Commanderie de Bordeaux, Confrerie Des Chevaliers du Tastevin,, Il Cenacolo Dulcamara and a member of the Order of St. Hubertus.

Robert was a friend to many and lived life with intention.

Robert was an amazing storyteller, a creator of conversation, and was a lover of travel, wine, and building unique homes with his wife. He embodied the entrepreneurial spirit and enjoyed passing lessons to his children and their children. “RG” loved to entertain, and to know him was to love him. `

Robert is survived by his wife of 52 1/2 years, Mary Beth Van Dine; daughter Sabrina Smith and son-in-law Douglas Smith, and their children Cammie and Connor; and son Sean Van Dine and Ren Oshiro, and their children Sean and Terra.

A Celebration of Life is planned for 2021. Robert had a passion for fundraising for the Catholic Education Foundation, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, which provides tuition assistance for low-income students. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Catholic Education Foundation at https://cefdn.org/ or to the Cerna Foundation, in Robert’s name, at cernafoundation.org, to fund research and treatment for Interstitial Lung Disease.

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