Business columnist dies at 80

Marilyn Grein

Marilyn Grein, who wrote the Saddleback Valley News’ Business Watch column for 16 years, died Saturday at the age of 80.

Brooke Edwards Staggs of The Orange County Register writes, “A Detroit native, Grein had made her way to Orange County and was working as a receptionist when the Orange County Register bought Saddleback Valley News in April 1990. She stayed on with the paper through the transition, eventually asking to work as an assistant in the newsroom.

“Chris Meyer, editor for the Register’s South County team at the time, had decided he was in need of a local business columnist to keep the community updated on what restaurants were opening and which stores were closing down. Though Grein was still working fulltime as a receptionist, answering phones and ordering supplies, Meyer approached her and asked if she’d take on the column.

“‘Initially she was reluctant because she said, ‘I’m not a trained writer, I’m just a receptionist,” Meyer recalled. He assured Grein he’d coach her and that he had faith in her. ‘She actually became quite good at it. In fact, she was probably the best I’ve ever seen at writing a community business column.’

“Grein wrote her columns for Saddleback Valley News in the first person, sharing her experiences in visiting area businesses while also sharing pieces of herself.”

Read more here.