John Thomas de Runtz |

John Thomas de Runtz


A celebration of life will be at a later date for Genoa resident John Thomas de Runtz, 80, who died Dec. 17, 2010, at his home.

Born Jan. 11, 1930, in Camden, N.J., he attended the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1952 with a degree in geology.

He started his career as a geologist in Butte, Mont., with Anaconda. In 1954, he worked in a chrome and platinum mine in the Still Water Valley near Red Lodge, Mont. A job for Anaconda as chief engineer in the Darwin Mines outside Lone Pine brought him back to California. He went to work as a field representative of Hercules Powder in 1956. He worked in the 11-mile tunnel that diverted the Trinity River into the Shasta River.

He married Genoa resident Margaret “Peg” Hollister June 15, 1957, at Lake Tahoe. The couple made their home in Redding, Calif., until 1959, when they purchased a ranch in Dayton. Mr. de Runtz worked the ranch until 1969, when the couple sold the property. They divorced in 1970.

He started working construction in Reno and then moved to Alaska in 1972 and worked construction until 1980. He moved to Berkeley, where he bought sailboats, refurbished and sold them. He retired in the early 1980s and started traveling the world. He purchased a home in Hamilton, Mont., and lived there part of the year.

Mr. de Runtz moved into a home on the family property in Genoa.

He is survived by his sister Patricia de Runtz; son Geoffrey (Jan) de Runtz; daughter Amelia (Bikram) Vaidya; grandchildren Veerachet, Sithidet and Woraphet Kaew un and Jihlan Vaidya.