VAN ZANTEN, René René van Zanten of Austin, Texas, passed away on the 21st of August 2020, due to the Covid-19 disease. Because of the ongoing dangers from the pandemic, we are not planning a funeral or memorial service. René was born in Jakarta, Indonesia on January 6, 1944. His family moved to the The Netherlands, and later immigrated to the United States where they lived in Morgan City, Louisiana. René went to LSU where he earned an undergraduate degree in European History and a Doctor of Jurisprudence. Rene's surname at birth was Sigarlaki which he changed to van Zanten when he became an American citizen. He practiced Oil and Gas law for many years, working for Tenneco Oil Company, then as President of Sanchez-O'Brien Oil Company, and finally forming his own companies. He lived in Houston for many years, and in Austin for the last 13 years of his life. He also lived in Laredo and Denver. René was an excellent tennis player and played for many years. He also loved chess, military history, especially World War II, and classical music, especially Mozart. He will be remembered by many for his vast intellect, engaging personality, and love of life. He was a good conversationalist and made everyone he met feel comfortable. He never met a person he couldn't talk to. He is preceded in death by his parents, Maria and John, and his brothers Johan and Paul. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Catherine van Zanten, his son Johan van Zanten and daughter-in-law Mirabelka Przyborowska, daughter Jeanne Tamayo and son-in-law Anthony Tamayo, sister Barbara van Zanten, brother Walter van Zanten and sister-in-law Sue van Zanten, nephew Nathan van Zanten and nieces Emily and Adriana van Zanten.
Published in Austin American-Statesman on Aug. 30, 2020.