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Curtis Maurice Klaerner, age 93, died peacefully on Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. He was born Sept. 7, 1920 in Fredericksburg, TX to Elgin and Irene Wagner Klaerner. In 1923 the family moved to San Antonio. He graduated from Brackenridge High School in 1938 and The University of Texas in 1942 (B.S. in Chemical Engineering) and attended MIT's Business Management program. In 1983 Curtis was recognized by UT's College of Engineering as one of four Distinguished Engineering Graduates.
In 1942 he began a 37-year career in the oil business, starting at the Magnolia refinery in Beaumont, TX as chief process engineer. Twelve years later Curtis took over as manager of Mobil's Buffalo, NY refinery. In 1956 he moved to the New York headquarters of Mobil as manager of manufacturing for the eastern US. Next Curtis entered the company's international division, first as regional vice president of Europe headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland and then six years as president of the international division. Returning to the headquarters in New York he was executive vice president and served on the Board of Directors. After retiring from Mobil, Curtis moved back to San Antonio and became president and chief operating officer of the Commonwealth Oil Refining. He later served as President of the Board of Directors of Intermaritime Consortium in Geneva, as well as the Belgian Refining Co. of Antwerp, and the West Indies Oil Co. in Antigua.
He formerly belonged to Oak Hills Country Club, Petroleum Club, Town and Country Optimist Club, the Revelers, Lamplighters, Los Alegradores, and the Exchange Club. Curtis was a member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church. He enjoyed golf and bridge, and was an avid world traveler. Having visited 106 countries Curtis belonged to the Circumnavigators Club.
Curtis was preceded in death by his parents and first wife, Aileen Eitt Klaerner. He is survived by his wife of 13 years, Jean Lockhart Klaerner; daughter Dr. Sherilyn Allen, Boyertown, PA, and her husband James Yarmush; son Curtis Elgin Klaerner, San Antonio, and his wife Bonnie Bryant Klaerner; stepdaughter Sandra Joseph Bieri, Austin, TX and her husband Dr. James Bieri; and stepson John Joseph, San Antonio. His five grandchildren include Dr. Lisa Allen, Tyler, TX; Beau James Yarmush, Boyertown, PA; Justin Yarmush, Fishkill, NY; Lauren Klaerner Izzo, Fort Worth, TX; and Kevin Klaerner, San Antonio. Two great-grandchildren survive.
Private services will be held at Sunset Memorial Park. Rev. David Read of St. Luke's Episcopal Church will preside. Friends and family are invited to celebrate Curtis' life at the San Antonio Country Club on Thursday, Sept. 26th from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be given to Cancer Therapy Research Center or the
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The guestbook at
Porter Loring Mortuary
San Antonio, TX 78212
Published in Express-News from Sept. 24 to Sept. 26, 2013