This memorial website was created in memory of the remarkable Paul Grzymkowski. Through his extraordinary life's journey he touched & fascinated so many people.
To accommodate all the people wanting to honor this amazing man, his memorial would have been huge, so this site was created to be a place where everyone could share their tributes and stories about Paul.

Unfortunately, due to the CDC Coronavirus restrictions the memorial services were limited to immediate family and very closest friends.
We aired the event on Zoom for people who could not attend.

Click here for the full video of the event, including the pre-event slide show.

In lieu of flower please send a donation in Paul’s name to the Nature of Wildworks,
Lions, Tigers & Bears, Pitbulls & Paroles or the animal rescue organization of your choice.

If you are moved to do so, please leave a short tribute to Paul below,
and/or your favorite memory with Paul on the 'Stories' page.

Posted by Tone Kroglund on April 2, 2022
Paul… it is so unfair. Why did you and your big heart have to leave whereas people without hearts get to stay? It is more than impossible to understand. We miss you! ❤️The world misses you!
Posted by Scott Johannessen on April 1, 2022
Paul, the world has changed much since you left, yet still the brightness of your life shines without end on those who knew you well. You are deeply missed. Until we meet again, friend.
Posted by Susanne Hughes on April 1, 2022
Paul – It’s been a year, I still think of you often and with a smile. I’ll never forget your quirky sense of humor, and that mischievous twinkle in your eye. Nor how much kindness you put into the world…sweetness to the menagerie that called your home theirs. Who else could befriend a coyote, but someone with a really big heart, someone like you? And most importantly, I love how you loved Joanna, such a beautiful thing love is! Yes, I miss you, we all do. And I wanted to take a moment to thank you for all these treasured memories I can ponder over the coming years.
Posted by Carol Howe on April 1, 2022
Paul, the world is so much sadder since you left us. The Ukrainian Festival in Rochester that brought your family together each year will no longer be the same joyous festival. If all leaders, nations and peoples had your kindness, generosity and world view, this world would be so much better. You made a DIFFERENCE …a power couple with beautiful Joanna quietly sharing your gift with others. You are greatly missed.
Posted by Christina Erteszek on March 8, 2022
Joanna, so wonderful to have spent some time with you last month. We love you and miss Paul, though know he's in a good space and loves you forever!!
Posted by Norm Cates on March 7, 2022

Dear Johanna and Family,            March 7, 2022

The ability I have to find adequate words to describe the deep caring and fond memories I have about my friendship and caring for your darling, Paul, is seriously challenged... 

I write the word challenged.... because words cannot possibly adequately express the heartfelt love and caring I, and very many of us, have had for many years for this wonderful human. 

Paul was truly ONE of a kind.  And, ALL of us who knew, and were friends with Paul, were truly and very blessed to have had him as a friend. Paul's been missed greatly during this past year, and he'll be greatly missed forever. 

May Paul continue to REST IN PEACE.

Sincerely... from very deep in my heart,

Norm Cates
Club Insider
Founder and Tribal Leader Since 1993
First IHRSA President and Co-Founder, 1981
2001 Dale Dibble Distinguished Service Award Winner
2017 Club Industry Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
(770) 635.7578 Home & Office
(470) 488.7266 Cell

Posted by Jen Yankee Caulfield on March 6, 2022
Oh Pauly, it's still so surreal that you've "moved on." You've probably noticed that your & Jo's "village" has sure stepped up to help her navigate this new world.
Your siblings are so amazing too!

Thank you for continuing to watch over all of them. Oh, Miss Kitty Monkey Bottoms sends her love & really does appreciate all you & Jo did for her. She can't admit that though, of course.

You are loved & remembered daily.
Happy Birthday!
Posted by Carol Howe on March 5, 2022
Paul, you are always in our thoughts….especially when we hear a story about a kind person rescuing a distressed animal. Your kindness knew no bounds.
Happy Birthday, dear man.
Posted by Sharon Ohalloran on March 5, 2022
Happy Birthday Paul
Only knew you (and Joanne too) to say HI to @Calabasas Swim & Tennis but you are a very hard person to forget & your smile and sparkling eyes will remain in my mind forever--God Bless You and I'm sorry your not here today for everyone that knew and loved you soo much....
Posted by Christine Grzymkowski on March 5, 2022
Happy Birthday in heaven Pauly. I miss you terribly but know you are happy and celebrating today with Mom and Dad. Please keep coming to me in my dreams. I cherish every one of them. And thank you so much for answering my prayers this past month. I knew you would be there for our family. I love you very much and can’t wait to see you again! Your loving twin forever, Christy
Posted by Scott Johannessen on June 5, 2021
I met Paul in the spring of 1989, when he had his apartment in Marina del Rey. Before then, Paul worked, and often slept, out of an upstairs office at 360 Hampton Drive in Venice. “The Mecca of Bodybuilding.” Gold’s Gym. About a couple years after I met Paul he met Joanna, who would quickly become his best friend and the love of his life. Joanna was, and still is, Paul’s soulmate. Inseparable. Forever.

Nine years before I met Paul his brother Pete asked him to move from New York and join him in LA. Pete had a grand vision. He wanted to grow Gold’s Gym. He wanted to change the world. Pete knew Paul could deliver it. Along with Paul, and with the help and unwavering support of Paul’s good friend Rich Minzer, the three dramatically changed the health and fitness industry. What they did had never been done before. Gold’s went from a small handful of gyms to a worldwide fitness phenomenon, comprising over 535 gyms. This is just one of Paul’s many legacies. This was the Gold’s Gym family. These were Paul’s friends.

Closer to home, Paul loved his Topanga community. I attended many events with him and Joanna. The annual parades, the Will Geer theater, Froggy’s and other restaurants. Paul loved the local theater. Shakespeare wrote, “How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.” Paul’s good deeds were countless. His candle showered brightly and in abundance. For those of us who were fortunate enough to call Paul “friend” he showered us with his beams of light. Paul was many things to many people. But at the end of the day, Paul was one thing to everyone he met. A friend. If you met Paul and did not see it you were not paying attention.

Then there was the room at the inn. This is what Paul and I called a room in Paul and Joanna’s house on Horseshoe Drive. When I was in west LA for business Paul would insist that I stay with them and not in a hotel. A great room to wake up in. A view of the sunrise. Mornings in paradise. My stays with Paul and Joanna were never just visits. They were events. They were experiences of sharing: good conversation, food, hikes in the Topanga hills, more food, sometimes business meetings, and more food. When I left their home, there was no goodbye, just “see you later.”

Now we move forward, faced with profound loss. And with loss comes grief; a love we cannot share. And so we grieve. When you lose someone, who is close to you, you don’t just have a bad day, you have a new reality, emptier than the last. They say time heals all wounds. I do not believe it does. Time only fades the memory of loss’s pain. Fortunately, we all have exceedingly good memories of our time with Paul. Those memories help us wash away the hurt and amplify what he was and is.

My times and experiences with Paul were many, at both personal and business levels. And during those times Paul was always himself. I believe that every moment and every event of every man's life on earth plants something in his soul. In 1989 Paul gave his friendship to me. And it would grow into a true and lasting friendship. It was good. There is no legacy so rich as friendship. Friends are siblings God never gave us. For those of us here, God gave us Paul. I love him like a brother.

Paul believed that we each have a special gift, and we have a responsibility to find it and share it to benefit others. Paul was one of God’s gifts to us. Paul exemplified the meaning of friendship. Paul lived a fulfilling and purposed life. Paul’s gift to us was himself. He was a good man. He was a wonderful friend. Paul was my best friend. He will be sorely missed.

. . . Paul, you had a wonderfully good, full, rich, and loving life. You have the gift of a soulmate, a bashert, in Joanna; a true gift, a true friend, a forever friend, a blessing. Thank you for your March 23 email. You were not “AWOL.” My response to your message says, “No worries. Life’s transitions are often stressful. Take care and call me anytime.” That is where we left it. So, for my part, I will not say goodbye. Paul, take care of yourself, save a room at the inn for me, and I’ll see you later.

Scott Johannessen
Posted by Dennis Grzymkowski on May 31, 2021
Bond, James Bond; 007. That was my first thought when Pauly surprised me by picking me up in his new Datsun 240Z: cool, suave, debonair. Pauly and I hung around together for a decade from our late teens until he moved to California. While guys were dreaming of muscle cars. Pauly was way ahead of us thinking sports cars. We spent summers skiing in the Finger Lakes region and the rest of the year creating havoc. He had a terrific sense of humor, a permanent grin and was fun to be around. He was the most inquisitive person I ever met. He desired to know everything about everything. There is no doubt in my mind that he was the poster boy for the Boy Scouts Code of Conduct. His gift to me was the fact that after doing something together, I always felt that life was a little better. I always considered Pauly my sixth brother. Pauly will never know how many people he affected in a positive way. However, I do know that god was keeping score.

Posted by Joanna Grzymkowski on May 27, 2021
Written by Fran Wagoner:

Paul Grzymkowski had achieved in life something for which I still strive. Paul was a thoroughly decent human being. He still is. His level of decency and love live on well longer than the span of a lifetime. He embodied these qualities. They are the benevolent viruses that raise the good in all humanity. I love my friend Paul.

To you Joanna, I love you and grieve with you, I am so glad that Paul found you. There is no past tense when it come to this most unusual man, he is… not was, is.
Posted by Susanne Hughes on May 18, 2021
It’s hard to boil a rich and full life down to just a few words, something worthy of a tribute to a man such as Paul. Kindness, I think, ran through his blood, and came out as generosity.

Paul freely gave of his time to innumerable causes. He jumped right in without reservation when people were in need of help or comfort. He fed anyone he could, from wild animals, to homeless, or anyone who showed up at their home. It seemed to fill him with joy, watching others consume his creations.

I will forever treasure my many memories of conversations with Paul; laughing with him, always filled me with delight.

Ah yes, there are so many things I will miss about Paul. Mostly, how loving and kind he was to Joanna. Theirs really, a love for the ages.
Posted by Lindy Hill on May 11, 2021
Dear Joanna,
My husband and I felt your welcome the minute we arrived at your home several years ago for dancing. You both have brought wonderful contributions to the whole Topanga community. We want to give you our love and our very deepest condolences to you at this sad time. It was a shock for us to realize that he was gone and it is hard to imagine how hard this is for you. Your tribute in the paper made me realize that, in addition to his kindness and his other wonderful qualities, he was a truly humble person. Once I asked him about his life before moving to Topanga. He replied only that he was, "retired from Business." He did not list his amazing accomplishments. I just thought you should know. He was a sincerely caring and loving person who brought a special joy to everyone around him.
Our hearts go out to you. He will be missed.
Lindy and Seth Hill
Posted by Sharon Ohalloran on May 2, 2021
I didn't know Paul or Joanna well but would always see them together at the Calabasas Pool and always thought to myself how lucky they were to have each other and I saw how happy they both were together by their body language and now I find out how true that was--- may you rest in peace Paul knowing how many of us saw all the love to gave in your short life....
Posted by Jill Palethorpe on May 1, 2021
Dearest Joanna,
Sparky and I were so happy the day you and Paul were married at our home. It was the perfect ceremony and afterwards we sat on my verandah and had snacks before we went to dinner. He told me then how lucky he was to have found you and how blessed he felt with his life. Joanna, you were a wonderful couple -- soulmates forever -- and I hold that day as special in my memories of Paul. Our arms around you, you are in our hearts. love always, Sparky and Jill and all at the Rancho.
Posted by Mike Epstein on April 30, 2021
I am heartbroken about the passing of my dear friend Paul. Paul was one of the most caring, warm and friendliest people that I have ever met. When Art and I purchased our original Gold's Gym license with Paul it was like doing business with family and it always stayed that way. Every franchisee that I know felt that way about Paul and Rich. Paul stuck with us through thick and thin and was always supportive and accommodating for anything we ever needed. It was truly and honor for us to call him our friend and he will be missed greatly by so many. Our thoughts and prayers are with Joanna, Pete and Paul's entire family as we mourn such a wonderful person and life taken from us way too soon. Mike Epstein and Art Carril 
Posted by Stephen Powers on April 29, 2021
As so many others have shared here, Paul was extraordinarily kind and gracious to everyone he met. He lived life with great passion and joy.  I had the honor of serving with him for many years on the Board of Theatricum Botanicum. He and Joanna loved the theater, and in addition to his valuable guidance, born of decades of top-level business experience, they supported Theatricum financially, and with their bare hands—weeding in the gardens, cleaning and building. My heart goes out to Joanna and to all his family. We will miss you, Paul.
Posted by Susan Rodriguez on April 22, 2021
When I first moved to Topanga, Paul & his beautiful wife, Joanna, were two of the first & also the kindest people I met here. A great loss for all he knew, but Heaven most certainly gained an angel. Sending prayers & angels to his loved ones.
Posted by Randy Bostic on April 21, 2021
Paul was such a life force and an example of positivity and care. He exuded kindness, generosity, enthusiasm, love and compassion. As his Horseshoe neighbors and friends, my family was one of the many recipients of his generosity and support. 
The yearly (much envied!!) Horseshoe Block Party that Paul and Joanna hosted was an event that showed all of Paul's many gifts. His warmth was extended to all of us. His smile would light up the block. His warm hugs were wonderful. He made the young children so happy by introducing them to the joys of toasted marshmallows. And he made the adults happy with his barbecue. Paul was a gift to those of us who knew him. He was always going outside himself to help others. 
His passing was a loss to all of us, but especially to his so loved and loving Joanna. Joanna, we know that the biggest part of Paul's joy was you. We hope that gives you comfort as you go through this profound loss of such a wonderful partner. 
Posted by Bill Freimuth on April 20, 2021
An extraordinary human being. He simply glowed with a joy of life that I've rarely seen, a joy that came from his love for Joanna, from his successful career, from his many interests, and from his generous service to nature, community and humanity. And to me, he was not only a friend and neighbor whose warmth and compassion were ever present, but also an exemplar of life well lived. He unlocked some of life's secrets and shared them freely. His presence was larger than life and will be deeply missed.
Posted by Ron Grzymkowski on April 20, 2021
Exceptional concern and kindness is what comes to mind when I think of my nephew Paul. Surely, he is embraced by Our Lord.
He was consistent in demonstrating these all too rare humanistic traits. Everybody will miss Pauly and and all of us will hold him close in our memories. 
Joanna, you have our love and our prayers
Posted by Larry Cohn on April 19, 2021
You will be missed Paul. Always a positive spirit, it was always a pleasure to have you and Joanna at the bistro for a meal. I always appreciated our talks in the early days regarding business directions and you were always there when I needed help. May you rest in peace, knowing you affected so many lives in such a positive way. Larry
Posted by Christina Erteszek on April 19, 2021
Paul Grzymkoswski , a most generous, kind-hearted man with a will and perseverance beyond measure. What I loved (love, because I still do) is Paul’s joie de vie, his relationship to animals, his passion and compassion to make the world a better place. His work in feeding vast numbers of those in need, from securing a public location, setting up long tables, large pots chockful of nourishment he purchased, prepared and served. Paul’s love to entertain and inform. To cook! To eat! “This is the best (whatever the entrée be) I’ve ever had. No, really, I mean it!” Paul exclaimed every time he and Joanna came for dinner. But what I loved most about Paul was his love and devotion for Joanna. A most quintessential devotion.

I will always remember Paul Grzymkoswski as a servant of his faith. A man to be truly missed.
Posted by Michael Gluck on April 19, 2021
Paul changed my life and everyone around me. He was one of the best human beings that I have had the honor of knowing. He truly created a Gold’s Gym family. He was supportive and helped his associates succeed. Brilliant and organized, he changed fitness forever. He and Rich built something that will probably not be seen again. I miss him deeply.
My condolences to Joanna and his family.
Posted by Daniel Rhodes on April 19, 2021
About 30 years ago I met Paul through his twin Christine. It did not take long for me to understand the unbreakable strong bond between them. I had much older siblings and Paul being the same age as myself we were able to relate very quickly. As stated in all the previous tributes he will be greatly missed and I share the pain that Joanna and the rest of his beautiful family are going through. Rest in Peace Paul my surrogate brother!
Posted by Carol Howe on April 19, 2021
Paul left the world a better place. His love, kindness and generosity for family, friends, and all God’s creatures was remarkable.
During my last bout with cancer, Paul was a beacon of encouragement and research, sending a huge carton of supplements to bolster my immune system to get through the surgery and healing. He was my angel.
Spending time with Joanna and Paul at their house was a joy and a gourmet feast. In Rochester we had a an Iron Chef evening where Paul and I cooked up a storm to the delight of everyone. What a chef...what great memories.
Dennis and I were blessed to be a part of Paul and his incredible life partner, Joanna’s, lives. I’m certain he was greeted with a “Well done!” By Our Lord.
Posted by Jens Koepke on April 18, 2021
Paul was part of the life and blood of our Horseshoe Neighborhood and Topanga for me and my family. One of the astounding things about Paul was that in over 20 years of being his neighbor, I never once saw him not exude a positive, connecting energy. He seemed to embody an enthusiastic hopefulness about life. Another thing that was remarkable about Paul was his authentic devotion to and enjoyment of serving his community, both close and farther afield. I remember being blown away when he explained to me that after moving on from Gold's, he decided to self-fund a bi-weekly homeless feeding event in Santa Monica. And he didn't just do this for a couple of weeks and then tire of it, but kept at for quite a few years, despite harassment from the City and from some of the homeless patrons.

I also really enjoyed how passionate and excited he could get about nutrition and health issues -- he loved pushing the envelope and exploring new ideas in that arena.

One great hallmark of Paul was how incredibly giving of his time and energy to others he was. He seemed to always be doing some volunteer activity. And if some help was needed in the neighborhood, Paul could always be counted on.

Moreover, as a young family on the street two decades ago, we always appreciated how Paul (and Joanna) took time to talk to our kids and truly relate to them.

I will miss his big smile, his laugh, his friendly wave when he passed our house, his beaming face as he and Joanna hosted our annual Labor Day Potluck and doled out his kielbasas, and our countless little conversations on the street. There is definitely a large hole now in the Heart of Horseshoe.

A big hug to you Joanna, and you Paul wherever you are.....

Jens Koepke
Posted by Ken Meares on April 17, 2021
It was a great honor to know Paul.
A truly kind and caring man who was always pleasant, and willing to share his time to help others.
He was too young to leave us, but he left his mark on many of us. His honest and straightforward manner is something for all to follow.
Paul, you will always be remembered....
Posted by Erik Gunst Lund on April 17, 2021
Dear Cousin Joanna,
So sorry to hear, please accept our condolences from across the oceans - We send you our Love and warm heartfelt best wishes <3 To you and the rest of the family.
Love Erik Gunst Lund and family in Denmark
Posted by Georg Menz on April 16, 2021
Paul, you were an inspiration and will always be. I know you will continue to be among us; in our hearts, in our soul and in our actions.
Posted by Fritz Geisler on April 16, 2021
Paul was a true friend, one of a kind. I've never known a better man, nor had a better friend.
Posted by Rich Minzer on April 15, 2021
I will forever be grateful To Paul for giving me the opportunity and insisting i come to California and to become His assistant to the president of Golds Gym Franchising & Licensing Paul Grzymkowski.We met the first time at a trade show with Pete Grzymkowski in NYC called Club industry as i was working for a equipment line that Golds Gym used in there Venice location and to recommend to Golds Gym owners called Polaris .. with the Blessing of his brother Pete Grzymkowski the Principal owner i came to California and Paul made sure i had a place to live in his apartment in Santa Monica which i subleased from him for 2 years as Paul moved in his new place in Marina Del Rey. we went to work the next day i came in getting ready for a Golds Gym convention 1988 but each day Paul would make sure i was ok in every way at work and out side work he made sure each Birthday i had we did something he cooked dinner or we went to lunch we bonded Instantly as i understood what was needed and are strategy in what Paul felt was needed to grow the business as Paul became not only my good friend but a uncle to me... As we grew Golds gym internationally from 50 locations to 538 over a 11 year1988 - 1999 span . Paul had a flair for making every Gym owner feel they were a part of everything we did .As Paul would spend a day or 2 with every new gym owner from lunch to showing them around the area to cooking them dinner at his home and making sure there investment was ` successful in the Golds Gym brand..When ever i suggested something we would go thru the pros n cons on how it would Help each gym owner and the brand.. we spent every day on helping the Gym owners grow we took over a 100 calls a day  Paul was always making sure each location grew with his calls follow ups and genuine concern and personal visits in helping each location succeed..I got to do so much and watch How Paul treated every one which was first class ..I also got to take care of the most recognized Gym in the world Golds Gym Venice CA,by equipping it yearly with million dollars of equipment every year with the opportunity given to me thru Paul His brother Pete and partners Tim & Ed..I will Miss our talks and seeing him and him checking up on me to see how i was doing along with bday calls and what he can do to help me in any way he can...Paul i will always Love you and be for ever grate ful for making me feel i was a brother to you,& the opportunity you gave me , Joanna my heart as you know is broken... there is much more i could say since Paul did so much for me and many others ..Some one asked me recently if you could do it over again You & Paul would you i said YES 150 % but this time i would do it slower so we can enjoy it more .. Rich
Posted by Christi Engel on April 15, 2021
Eight years ago I was one of the new kids on the block, in Topanga, on Horseshoe Drive. It was through Paul and Joanna's annual summer-block party-pot luck extravaganza that Bill and I truly became a part of the neighborhood, and hope that the same can be said by our other new neighbors. Paul was an integral thread woven throughout the Topanga community. He volunteered in innumerable ways, but my favorite was the cooking that he did for The Sages. I think that he would have liked to live long enough to insure that no person in the world ever went hungry. Paul, you are truly a beautiful soul!
Posted by Derek Barton on April 15, 2021
When you work with someone for 15 years, you learn a lot about them. Paul Grzymkowski, as the Head of Franchising for Gold’s Gym Enterprises, had the knack for choosing the right franchisee for the right location no matter where in the world. Those Gold’s Gym Franchisees whom we worked with back then went on to become some of our closest friends. Thank you, Paul, for bringing us all together! You are loved and missed by so many!!! Derek
Posted by Max Dawson on April 15, 2021
A phrase I keep seeing in these tributes is that Paul treated everyone like family. That was certainly true in my case. I had the good fortune of being Paul's and Joanna's next-door neighbor on Horseshoe Drive. As a newcomer to Topanga Paul went out of his way to include make me feel right at home. Over time, he became like a father to me.

Paul was a source of advice, comfort, company, laughs, and, most of all, inspiration. He inspired me in so many ways: through his volunteer work and community involvement; through his kindness toward and concern for animals both domesticated and wild; through his hospitality and generosity; and through his dedication to and love for Joanna. I didn't know the Paul who was a legend of the fitness industry. I knew the Paul who helped out the neighbors, spoiled my cats with love, doted on Joanna, and fed me the best ribs and mashed potatoes of my life. That's the man I admire I so much, and whom I aspire to be like. I love you Paul.
Posted by Pete Grymkowski on April 15, 2021
In 1980 after purchasing the only Gold's Gym in 1979, I invited my brother Paul to come out to California from Rochester, N.Y., for a visit. 
I remember Paul's first day in California, we went to lunch at Zuckie's coffee shop in Santa Monica, and we came up with a slogan "If everyone in the world can not come to Gold's Gym, then we will bring Gold's Gym to everyone in the world!"
From that day forward, and for the next 19 years, Paul headed up the Gold's Gym International Licensing Program, which was not only the first international fitness chain, but also led to international distribution of Gold's brand name products such as activewear, vitamin supplements, home gym equipment, in thousands of retail outlets globally. Gold's became the third most famous brand in the world next to Disney and Harley.
Paul pioneered one of the greatest changes in the health  and fitness industry. He started by forming a team of three with an assistant, Rich Minzer and a secretary Linda Reyes, and they literally moved mountains and replaced them with Gold's Gyms throughout the entire world. 
Paul also pioneered the annual Gold's Gym International Conventions starting with the first at the Holiday Inn in Santa Monica, to eighteen more in major venues of Las Vegas, New Orleans, Miami. 
As so many of the Gold's Gym owners know, Paul treated everyone like family- the Gold's Gym family.
Paul, we all love you and will miss you tremendously!
Peter Grymkowski
Posted by Norm Cates on April 15, 2021
April 15, 2021

To: All Who Knew and Loved Paul .... like I, and so many of us in the health, racquet and sportsclub industry.... I want to say this:

To say that Paul was ONE OF A KIND would be a significant understatement. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know a lot of fine people in my blessed 47 years in our industry and I can honestly say here today, without equivocation, that Paul was one of the kindest and most excellent human beings I’ve ever met or known in our industry ... a special industry that’s full of outstanding people and I know he will be sorely missed by all who knew him. 

Norm Cates
Club Insider
Founder and Tribal Leader Since 1993
First IHRSA President and Co-Founder, 1981
2001 Dale Dibble Distinguished Service Award Winner
2017 Club Industry Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
(770) 635.7578 Home and Office
(470) 488.7266 New Cell #
Posted by Peggy Gunst on April 14, 2021
. I didn't know Paul long only about 15 years he was an amazing man, an amazing husband an amazing brother-in-law. There was never a time I didn't see a smile on his face. I am going to miss him deeply as he was such a big part of our family. Know that you'll always be in my heart and always in my thoughts. We will take care of Joanna for you we love you Paul and we miss you deeply love Peggy
Posted by Joanna Grzymkowski on April 14, 2021
Written by Beth Goode:

It is a sad time for the Trash Warriors. One of our most beloved warriors, Paul Grzymkowski has suddenly died. It is a shock to us all. We grieve for and with his beloved wife for whom he ever only had sweet, grateful, clearly-smitten words to describe her. He loved Joanna so. 
Paul was a kind, compassionate and put-his-money-where-his-mouth-is kind of man. Innovative and never idle, he helped the homeless, ushered at his church, cleaned trash up and down the canyon, and most likely was involved in more things than those of which we are aware. We each feel honored and forever touched by having known him and being lucky enough to call him a friend. We will certainly miss him very much. Our hearts are at half-mast, and we are not cleaning the boulevard this week.
Posted by karen grzymkowski on April 12, 2021
Twins Pauly and Christy were still in diapers by the time I came along so I instantly became part of their twinship. There never seemed to be a time when there weren’t enough kids for kickball on sunny days or monopoly on rainy ones. Pauly was the quiet, observant one and he developed a genuine care and concern for other quiet, observant creatures and brought them home whenever he could.
It always amazed me that he found the time and energy to devote to community and charitable causes and events. His heart was big and he didn’t shy away from letting it dictate his life.
As a brother, he taught me that friendship and connection are so much more important than possessions or status and that a sweet, giving nature is the best gift a sister could receive.
Posted by Joanna Grzymkowski on April 11, 2021
My Beloved Pauly,
I am broken, my heart shattered, my life exploded, and do not know how I am going to live without you...
But I am finding, through this terrible pain, much comfort from the outpouring of love, affection and meaningful memories that so many of our family members & friends (whether old or new) have been sharing with me as your spirit and spark are ever present.
I always thought of you as 'My Pauly' but really you were such an important part of so many lives. You were a man of the world, a smart, generous, compassionate and loving soul that will never ever be forgotten.
I love you to the moon and back, and always will!
Your adoringly devoted wife, Joanna

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Recent Tributes
Posted by Tone Kroglund on April 2, 2022
Paul… it is so unfair. Why did you and your big heart have to leave whereas people without hearts get to stay? It is more than impossible to understand. We miss you! ❤️The world misses you!
Posted by Scott Johannessen on April 1, 2022
Paul, the world has changed much since you left, yet still the brightness of your life shines without end on those who knew you well. You are deeply missed. Until we meet again, friend.
Posted by Susanne Hughes on April 1, 2022
Paul – It’s been a year, I still think of you often and with a smile. I’ll never forget your quirky sense of humor, and that mischievous twinkle in your eye. Nor how much kindness you put into the world…sweetness to the menagerie that called your home theirs. Who else could befriend a coyote, but someone with a really big heart, someone like you? And most importantly, I love how you loved Joanna, such a beautiful thing love is! Yes, I miss you, we all do. And I wanted to take a moment to thank you for all these treasured memories I can ponder over the coming years.
his Life


Paul M. Grzymkowski passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on April 1, 2021 in Woodland Hills, CA. He is survived by his devoted wife, Joanna Gunst Grzymkowski, brother Peter Grzymkowski, and sisters Margaret Halstead, Christine Grzymkowski and Karen Grzymkowski, as well as aunts and uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, and his godchildren. Paul and his twin sister Christine were born on March 5, 1949 in Rochester NY to Mary (Jacula) and Peter Grzymkowski.

His business experience started at an early age with several enterprising businesses throughout grammar school and high school. Along with maintaining a business major GPA of 4.0 throughout high school and college and lettering in the sports of wrestling and football, Paul (as a student) also owned and operated a building maintenance/landscaping company and a catering business. He received business degrees from Monroe Community College and Rochester Business Institute.

In April of 1980 Paul moved to Santa Monica, CA to join his brother Pete as one of four managing partners of Gold’s Gym Enterprises, Inc. With the title of President and International Director of Gold’s Gym Franchising, Inc., Paul, during his 19-year tenure with Gold’s Gym redefined the business aspect of the fitness industry by developing the first comprehensive franchising system for facility operations. His efforts contributed to the opening of 535 franchised Gold’s Gym fitness centers in 47 states and 24 countries, with over two million members (by the time they sold the business in 1999).

During his years in the Fitness Industry, Paul developed extensive domestic & global fitness contacts and business experience pouring his whole heart into the work, creating what he called the ‘Gold’s Gym family’. He often hosted franchisees in his home with his fantastic cooking, warm heart and fascinating conversations. He stayed close to many of the people he worked with, especially Scott Johannessen, Rich Minzer, Derek Barton & Neal Spruce.

Paul made a positive difference in the lives of almost everyone he touched, and in return his time with Gold’s Gym and all the business colleagues & franchisees he worked with meant the world to him. He really loved and lived Gold’s Gym and was largely responsible for the domestic and international growth of the well-known fitness franchise.

In 1999, after Gold’s Gym sold, Paul became a business & marketing advisor specializing in general business, franchising and licensing, strategic planning, along with dispute arbitration and negotiation. He sat on the board of three International Corporations and was involved with Health Engineering Group, GetCyced, Kaatsu-Japan, Nutrimost, Quicksilver Scientific, Original Quinton, Water & Wellness…

Paul met Joanna Gunst in 1992, they quickly fell in love and in ’96 they purchased a home in Topanga Canyon, CA. They were engaged in 2000 and married in 2015. They both felt so much gratitude to have found each other and that each year together was better than the last.

Paul was a very active and well-loved member of his Topanga community. He was head usher at Corpus Christi Catholic Church in Pacific Palisades, a 4th degree Knight of Columbus and sat on the board of directors of the Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum (a non-profit repertory theatre and academy) for 12 years.

He worked with many charitable organizations such as H.O.P.E. (Helping Other People Eat), CERT (Community Emergency Response Team), Arson Watch, T-CEP (Topanga Coalition for Emergency Preparedness), The Topanga Trash Warriors, The Nature of Wildworks (animal rescue which was especially close to his heart) and cooked monthly for the ‘Topanga Sages’ dinner. He enjoyed Gourmet Cooking, Ballroom Dancing, and the study of Functional/Preventative Medicine.

Paul’s warmth, spirit and generous nature were evident in each and every aspect of his life and he will be profoundly missed by the many people who were lucky enough to know him.

Recent stories

Generous Paul, from Joanna's bff's viewpoint...

Shared by Jen Yankee Caulfield on June 2, 2021
It’s still so surreal that we are writing these about Pauly…

Paul was easily one of the most generous people I’ve known, on so many levels. In charity, esp for animals, but also with his time, jumping to help anyone in need. Whether caring for the coyotes who showed up at their house rather bedraggled or feeding the homeless for years, he was there.
(And we’re not just talking a bag lunch handout to a guy on the corner. Oh no. Paul always did things all the way. If you saw their downstairs in those days, you know what I'm on about! You could barely walk through, with all the food and supplies for the homeless.)

Then there were Canyon projects like Topanga Trash Warriors, Chamber events, fundraisers, Nature of Wildworks and so much more.

I met Paul soon after he and Joanna started dating in the early 90’s. For all these years, when Jo and I met up, Paul always made sure we had cash in our pockets so we could treat ourselves to a fancy lunch or spa day. It was just another way he was nurturing to everyone, especially Jo. It seemed his main goal in life became, more and more, to be sure she was cared for properly. He took it to a higher level than most (he was a higher-level kinda guy!)

We should all be so lucky as to have a “Pauly” caring for us. He made such an impact in all he touched and is SO missed.

Just another Pauly, Uncle Den Den story.

Shared by Dennis Grzymkowski on May 31, 2021
I severed my Achilles Tendon and was in a cast for 6 weeks. They removed my cast on a Friday and of course my best pal Pauly picked me up to celebrate. We hadn't been out together for what seemed like an eternity. We went to Greenstreets. It was one of our favorite clubs to indulge in our usual ; chicken wings extra crispy and Perfect Manhattans on the rocks, both of which Pauly introduced me to. After we indulged,  I went to the rest room and my crutches slipped on the recently wet mopped floor. Pauly found me on the floor with blood everywhere. I am still not sure how he got me up the stairs, in to the car and to the Emergency Room. The Doctor determined the tendon was fine and the knot where they tied it together had popped through the skin. He was just going to suture the skin back together. Pauly, who was as curious as all of his beloved cats wanted to watch the procedure. The doctors and nurses attempted to convince him to leave but he insisted that he really was curious and wanted to watch. I was on my stomach in great pain and Pauly was leaning against a wall a couple of feet away studying the doctors technique. Pauly began sliding down the wall in slow motion. I watched him and it seems as if it took him 5 minutes to end up on the seat of his pants. He slid so slow, it was like watching a cartoon. He was just sitting there with his eyes rolling around. The doctor asked me what was so funny and I pointed at Pauly. They all rushed to him. Meanwhile, the staff had called my girlfriend Valerie, who is now my wife, and asked her to pick me up. When she arrived at reception, she told the receptionist she was there to pick up Mr. Grzymkowski. Valerie was floored when the receptionist asked her which Grzymkowski. They had admitted Pauly for a possible concussion. After I clarified that Pauly landed on his butt and that his brains were in his head, they released us. Of course, my ankle became infected for 9 months, ( more crutches). Pauly not only saved me from bleeding to death but transformed a nightmare to one of my fondest memories. I know that this event didn't diminish Pauly's curious nature in the least, hence his success. I've told this story a hundred times to a hundred people. Sometimes, I think that enduring that nasty infection was worth the memory of my pal and I out for a little rehabilitation. What a guy!
Shared by Tone Kroglund on May 28, 2021
Paul, your golden heart has stopped beating. But you will forever stay in my core. Forty years ago you and your family became part of my heart and soul. All the beautiful memories you gave me. All the years side-by-side and at a distance, yet always very close. I close my eyes and I can still see you. I can hear your kind and gentle voice. "I love this mud pie. Let's try the trick and Follow the leader" will stay with me forever just like you . Paul, you've had such a great impact on my life. I'm so grateful to you and Joanna!  I really wanted to see both of you in Stockholm. But now you have left us, travelled further away.  But I know, you will always stay very close in our hearts.

Tom, William, Lotta, Lille, Jonas and Linn, my mom and dad all wish you a good trip. Remember, we will always be there regardless.

I'll miss you Paul!