John J. Diem passed on February 21, 2016. He was born September 7, 1919 in Manhattan, New York. He was the son of Hazel Vanneman Diem of New York and Hans J. Diem of Schwellbrunn, Switzerland. He moved to Bradenton with his parents in 1936. His father was a pioneer in the crop protection industry. John graduated from Manatee High School and the University of Florida. He was married to Elizabeth Dye in 1942. They met at Manatee High. During WW II, he worked for Hercules Powder Company as a chemist in the nitric acid plant at the Sunflower Army Ordinance Works in Sunflower, KS. They produced enormous quantities of nitroglycerin for the war effort. After the war, he went into the Agricultural Chemical business at his father's company, Southern Agricultural Insecticides, Inc. They spent winters in Bradenton, FL and summers in Hendersonville, NC. The company supplied growers throughout the Southeast with the best technology available. He was employed by the company until the time of his death. He made enormous contributions to the success of the company. He was an avid fisherman and yacht's man. He was a diligent student of the Bible. He taught Sunday school for over fifty years and served as a deacon at the First Baptist Church for many years. He once confided that "the teenagers were less work than the seniors." He had a keen sense of humor. He was inducted into the Manatee County Agricultural Hall of Fame in 2001. He helped a lot of growers, employees and others. He always made the payroll. He will be missed. He is survived by his two sons: John R. Diem and William E. Diem, two grandsons, and four great grandchildren. His wife, Elizabeth, passed on in 2007. Memorial contributions can be made to: Manatee County Agricultural Museum, P.O. Box 1284, Palmetto, FL 34220. Visitation will be held at Griffith-Cline Funeral Home 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, February 24th. Services will be at the First Baptist Church of Bradenton at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 25th. www.GriffithCline.com
Griffith Cline Funeral Home
720 Manatee Ave. W.
Bradenton, FL 34205
Published in The Bradenton Herald from Feb. 23 to Feb. 24, 2016