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Jack Eugene Goertzen


1931 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Jack Eugene Goertzen Obituary
May 6, 1931 - July 30, 2016 Jack Eugene Goertzen, age 85, passed away peacefully July 30, 2016 in Laguna Beach, CA, due to respiratory failure. He was born May 6, 1931 in Culver City, CA to A.C. and Mary Ann Goertzen, and grew up at various addresses, mostly in the Mid-Town area of Los Angeles. His father developed apartment buildings throughout that area but moved the family to Laguna Beach for a year while Jack attended grade school; during this time, Jack developed his love for Laguna that became a lifelong commitment. He attended L.A. High School, was a dyed-in-the-wool Trojan, obtaining both his undergraduate and J.D. degrees at USC, was a member of Kappa Sigma, and honorably served in the US Army in Oklahoma. He met his wife, Fro (Rosalie), who was a stewardess for American Airlines, on the beach in Santa Monica while she was on a layover during a cross-country flight in 1958. They married in Laguna in 1959 and raised 5 children in Studio City, always spending summers in Laguna. He is remembered for his humor, sharp wit and gentle nature, in addition to having enjoyed an illustrious career as an outstanding jurist who sat on the benches of the L.A. Municipal Court, L.A. Superior Court and the California Court of Appeals, before spending many years as an arbitrator and mediator, hearing cases in all areas of the law, including criminal, medical and legal malpractice, construction and contracts. He and his wife, who pre-deceased him in 2007, spent most of their time, between the mid-1980s until her passing, at their home in Laguna. He loved Pink's hot dogs and hated broccoli, and was by any cook's account the best guest to have at table because almost every meal was the most delicious thing he ever ate. He had a voracious appetite for mystery novels and never adapted to computers, reasoning that Lincoln didn't need one to write the Gettysburg address. In his earlier years he loved jogging, and later took to a stationary bike when his knees betrayed him. His wife teased him frequently that his choices of exercise included running on a track in circles, only to be replaced by riding a bike that went nowhere. He always loved the water, was on the L.A. High School water polo team and owned one of the largest pairs of Churchill swimfins ever made to buoy him while bodysurfing. He is survived by his son (Stephen), his four daughters (Jann, Joyce, Marlene and Paula), his son-in-law (Albert Moscona), and his 5 grandchildren (Jack, Brenna, Ruby, Luke and Morgan), and leaves behind a faithful canine named Bowie that entertained him for hours every day. He also leaves behind a ton of useless things he managed to collect while his wife went 'antiquing', which includes an incomparable collection of California Raisin figurines, among many, many, many other collections... His passing is a huge loss to those how loved him. In accordance with his wishes, his family requests that you spend time with loved ones, take long walks on the beach and frequently toast enduring friendships lifelong and beyond, as that is what he would wish for everyone. Plans for a memorial mass are pending and will be announced.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Aug. 6 to Aug. 7, 2016
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