Eugene Bernard Rauen
February 24, 1928 - December 26, 2020
On December 26, 2020, the Rauen family lost their beloved husband, father, uncle and friend, Eugene "Gene" Bernard Rauen, after a long and well-fought war with prostate cancer. Gene was born to Raymond and Helen Rauen on February 24, 1928 in Los Angeles, California and grew up in nearby Glendale with his brother Stanley. Spirited and studious, he was a "yell leader" at Glendale High School where he excelled in government studies. Upon graduation, Gene joined the army and was deployed to Kyushu Island, Japan. While there he was stricken with scarlet fever and hospitalized and afterwards, at the young age of 18, he was promoted to technical sergeant and established the photographic unit for the 24th Infantry Division.
Returning to California, Gene enrolled at U.C. Berkeley and then transferred to Stanford University. After his sophomore year he was recalled to active duty during the Korean conflict and trained as a combat cameraman. The day before he was scheduled to depart for Korea, however, Gene volunteered for a classified mission that ultimately sent him to the tip of Greenland, where he served in the photographic corps documenting the construction of the secret Thule Air Force base.
After his service, Gene returned to Stanford where he earned both his undergraduate and law degrees. On a trip back home to Southern California, he fell in love with Molly Nilson and they were married in Warren, OH, in the sweltering summer of 1955. After Gene passed the California Bar, the couple took a break for a six month adventure through Europe and the Middle East. Gene then continued his studies, earning an MBA in finance from New York University. California was home, though, and the couple came back to Menlo Park, and eventually Atherton, to raise their two children, Marjorie and Ray. A life-long member of the California Bar Association—and, as he liked to remind his family, an undefeated trial attorney in the two cases he litigated—Gene joined Schwabacher and Co. in San Francisco as an investment broker. He enjoyed a long career as a talented and trusted financial advisor, retiring from Prudential Bache in the 1990s.
An outdoor adventurer, he enjoyed many years of skiing, swimming, hiking, fishing, and backpacking in the High Sierras. He remembered with particular fondness his involvement with the Cub and Boy Scouts. He was an avid fly fisherman and could be found pole in hand along the McKenzie River in Oregon every summer, often enjoying a lunch of pan-fried trout with his friends, family and favorite river guide during trips down the river. Always the photographer, there were endless shots of every event. A dedicated Stanford Football season ticket holder up to his 90th year, he found immense satisfaction in his three trips to the Rose Bowl while in his 80s.
Insatiable travelers, Gene and Molly took every opportunity to explore the world, starting in the 1950s and continuing into the new millennium. His photographs and slide shows, accompanied by hysterical stories and a cocktail or two, were always loads of fun. But above all, Gene loved his home, his garden, his dogs and the company of his and Molly's many, many close friends. Charming, quick-witted, kind and just plain funny, Gene will be missed by more people than he even realized. He is survived by his wife Molly, daughter Marjorie Rauen, son Ray Rauen (Kelly Torres), niece Katherine Rauen (William Tidyman) and nephew Mark Rauen. The family wishes to express deep gratitude to Pathways Hospice for their help and support. Memorial services will be delayed due to Covid.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Jan. 14 to Jan. 17, 2021.