Clarence E. Klaus, Jr.
Age 85, formerly of Saxonburg, passed away on Thursday, March 30, 2023. He was the son of Clarence E. Klaus, Sr. and Kathrine M. (Augustin) Klaus. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his son, Charles John Klaus. Clarence is survived by his son, Joseph (Pansa) Klaus of Thailand, his daughter, Jessica (Robert) Gardner of Chagrin Falls, OH; his grandsons, Sam and John; step-grandchildren Cookie and Lily; his siblings Kay Barrow, Roger Klaus (Rhonda), and Mary Wittmeyer; also by his friend, Sara Horsman and his friend, Brian T. Hardy. Interestingly, he and Sara discovered they were both born in the same hospital three months apart in Belleville, Illinois.
Growing up in southern Illinois, Clarence spent many of his childhood summers helping out on his grandparents’ farm. To Clarence, these summers provided “an appreciation for work and a love of nature” that have served as guiding values throughout his life.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Illinois College of Fine and Applied Arts in 1961. During a 50-year career, he was an architect for projects in more than 30 states, Canada and Spain. He worked for the firm Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum in St. Louis, and was a partner in Curry, Martin, Highberger and Klaus in Pittsburgh before forming his own firm, Klaus Associates. During his career he designed a range of projects, including the renovation of the William Penn Hotel, the Fox Chapel Golf Club and Brashear High School, among others. He particularly enjoyed designing residential projects because he knew who would be enjoying the space. He retired from full-time work in 2008 but stayed active with projects.
He was a very charitable man. He became a loyal supporter of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy with his first gift in 1974. Serendipitously, he was the architect in charge of reconfiguring Fallingwater’s carport into the current membership theatre in 1976. He supported the School of Architecture and Allerton Park in Monticello, Ill and established the Clarence E. Klaus Jr. Endowment Fund which increased educational opportunities for architecture students and enhanced the overall academic excellence in the School of Architecture.
Reflecting his love for nature and dogs, he has given generously to Ducks Unlimited. He also donated to the Eye and Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh.
Clarence shared his love of the outdoors with his black Labradors. At one point he owned seven labs at the same time. Over the last 25 years, he has competed in American Kennel Club hunt tests, adding many ribbons to his home’s trophy room — including first place at the 1994 Ducks Unlimited Continental Waterfowl Retriever Classic National Championship in Thomasville, Georgia. Clarence was also an avid Pirates and Steelers fan, particularly of the teams from the 70's. He was also a long time and active member of the Fox Chapel Golf Club.
The family would like to thank the staff of Concordia Fox Chapel for the wonderful treatment they provided Clarence over the past two years.
A gathering of family and friends will be held on Saturday, April 29th from 11a.m. to 12 noon at the Weddell-Ajak Funeral Home, 100 Center Ave. Aspinwall.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the Eye and Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh or the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy.
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