Winemaker Patricia Green was found dead of apparent natural causes Monday in her cabin near Dillard. She was 62.
Jim Anderson, her business partner at Patricia Green Cellars in Newberg, said Green was adventuresome with a love for natural, organic, living things.
In the past few days, he said, people who have known her for years and those who have only known her through her wines have reached out to express their condolences to Anderson.
“We’ve got people from all over the world reaching out to us, and the ones who knew her really well are devastated because she had a big impact on them, and people who just like Patricia Green Cellars have surprisingly similar things to say as people who’ve known her for years, and that’s been pretty amazing,” Anderson said.
Green had owned the Douglas County cabin since the early 1980s, when she had worked for a re-forestation business. She began her career in the wine industry in 1986 at HillCrest Winery & Distillery in Roseburg, where she started as a grape picker and went on to work as a winemaker from 1987 to 1989.
She made wines for several other Umpqua Valley wineries, including Girardet, before moving north to the Willamette Valley to build up Torii Mor Winery in 1993. In 2000, she and Anderson started Autumn Wind Winery in what is now the Ribbon Ridge AVA.
In addition to wine making, Green had also been involved with commercial fishing off the coast of Baja, Mexico, moccasin making, tree planting, concrete form work and much more.
“She had done so many different things over the course of her life prior to becoming a winemaker, and she was a very down-to-earth person who believed in the land and agriculture and believed we could farm grapes in a pristine and organic way to make wines that were about the place the grapes came from,” Anderson said. He added the pinot noir they produce at Patricia Green Cellars reflects the soil, climate, air and topography of the land.
Green had also cared for the people who have worked in her vineyards and had taken time and effort to make their lives better and easier, he added. She had contributed to an annual benefit called Salud Auction which supports healthcare for migrant farm workers in Oregon. The event will be held this weekend at two Willamette Valley vineyards.
According to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Green hadn’t been heard from in about a week. When someone went to check on her, they found her deceased. Green appears to have died by natural causes, according to the Douglas County Medical Examiner’s Office.