by Lisa Morgan –
This couple knew during the two hour phone call that preceded their “blind date” that theirs was going to be a special relationship. Patti Pivaar, a young singer/actress, captain of the Dean Martin Show’s Golddiggers and very eligible bachelorette, was set up with Dale Gribow, a prominent trial attorney, president of the Beverly Hills Men’s Charities singles group and confirmed bachelor, through a mutual friend. The match was made in heaven. They have been together since that first date and now, 30 years later, it is still divine.
“We went together for over two years,” Patti shared. “That Christmas night, I prepared dinner for my parents and Dale. I had made up my mind that if I didn’t receive a ring and a proposal, I was going to end the relationship and return to Cincinnati. I’ll never forget that night. I gave Dale a beautiful Lalique sculpture. I opened my gift from Dale and it was a book that said, ‘To a Special Friend’. I was so mad! Then, to make matters worse, Dale looked at me and said ‘Patti, would you please bring me a carrot?’ I stormed into the kitchen and opened the refrigerator and took out a carrot and gave it to Dale. ‘That’s not the right carrot,’ he said. ‘Go back and bring me another one.’ Then I really became angry, until I reopened the refrigerator and discovered a carrot with a large diamond ring on it. That’s Dale, always surprising me.” They were married the following September.
During their years in Beverly Hills, the Gribow’s were active in many charities. Together, they’ve chaired two consecutive Thalian Balls, the organization headed by Debbie Reynolds and Ruta Lee, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Thalian’s Mental Health Clinic at Cedars Sinai. When the City of Hope presented Dale with the Spirit of Life, Man of the Year Award, Patti chaired the ball committee. At one time, Dale served on the boards of 17 different charities in Los Angeles and Patti worked on most of them with him. Dale initially had a 30 person firm in Beverly Hills, earlier working as a Los Angeles County Deputy Public Defender. Dale is listed in 50 “Who’s Who” and has been honored 7 times as “Man of the Year” and “Dale Gribow Day” has been declared 4 times. Dale was also recently listed in Palm Springs Life’s Top Lawyers selection for 2011 and 2012.
After being drafted from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music to the Golddiggers, Patti appeared on 50 television movies and shows: Charlie’s Angels, Days of Our Lives and Quantum Leap. Her greatest thrill was singing for both President Reagan and Ford and performing at Reagan’s televised inaugural. She is president of Gribow Entertainment/ Imprint Media Productions. She filmed the Patti Gribow show live with a studio audience at CBS studios in PS before doing 700+ interviews with celebrities and professionals. Patti’s advocacy for women has earned her numerous awards including the “Women Leaders Forum 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award”; an Athena Award from the City of Palm Desert; the Palm Desert Citizen of the Year; 2009 Making a Difference Award by the Soroptimist’s; 2011 Woman of Distinctions in the Arts”, from American Pen Women; 2012 Sycamore High School Distinguished Alumni Award, presented only 3 times previously and a 2012 Golden Halo Award. She now has as many awards as Dale. She is currently the president of Palm Springs Women in Film and TV as well being a founder of The Ophelia Project and president for 3 ½ years for Women Leaders Forum.
Even in the most charmed lives, a challenge can come along that can take your breath away. The Gibrow’s strength and faith were put to the test when their daughter Gina was diagnosed with Kawasaki Disease at the age of 7. Patti and Dale were preparing to leave for the presidential inauguration the next day when Gina came down with her first fever. They immediately cancelled their plans refusing to leave town until they knew Gina was ok. When they received the unfamiliar diagnosis, Dale immediately called one of the members of his former bachelor’s group who was a pediatrician at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles. Dale was advised that Children’s Hospital was the West Coast Teaching Center for the disease.
Patti explained, “When you go through a crisis like this, you reevaluate your priorities.” Dale said, “I did not want my daughter to grow up as fast as some of our friend’s daughters who were wearing push up bras, lipstick and high heels at 9-12 years of age.” They decided that quality of life was more important than anything else and for those reasons, have since made their home in Palm Springs.
Dale likes to tease that it is his wife’s cooking, her Irish wit and attention to his Jewish traditions that make their marriage work. But then he adds seriously, “What really matters is that we are best friends as well as husband and wife.” Patti explains that her parents were like Ozzie and Harriet and they taught her to “never go to bed mad.” If there is an argument, Patti tells Dale, “Grow up and give me a kiss goodnight!”
Dale and Patti both confess they are still “in love and best friends” after meeting that fateful day, February 2nd, 30 years ago. Along with the advice to “never go to bed mad”, Dale has learned what every good husband learns: to say “You are right honey”.