Obituary for Mr. Clair H Rau

Clair H. Rau of York, PA passed away peacefully with family by his side on Thursday, November 2, 2023. He and his loving wife, Joan E. (Kerr), celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary in August. Born in York on October 17, 1930, he was the devoted son of Claude and Mary (Berkheimer) Rau.

Clair was also a devoted husband, father, and Grandad. He graduated from West York High School in 1948. He then graduated from Grove City College, where he played basketball, in 1952. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War and rose to Staff Sergeant in two years. Clair had a strong work ethic and held a supervisory role at Caterpillar Inc. He retired after 38 years. During those years, he also served on the Board of Directors at the YMCA for 15 years; enjoyed going into classrooms as a business consultant for Junior Achievement on behalf of Caterpillar; refereed PIAA basketball for 20 years; and enjoyed selling Christmas trees at Mailman’s for 6 years. 

Clair had a number of hobbies including model trains (a member of Train Collector’s Association for 40 years), automobiles, yard work, and golf. Clair and Joan volunteered with Meals on Wheels for many years. Clair could also often be seen enjoying a meal with Joan at Hallamshire Family Restaurant. An important part of Clair’s life had been as an active member of St. Matthew Lutheran Church for 80 years. He and Joan formed lifelong friendships there.

In addition to his wife, Clair is survived by his three daughters: Cynthia Hopkins and husband, John, Kimberly Rau, and Nanette Gingerich and husband, Dan. He was the proud Grandad of his grandchildren: Taylor (Jacki) Gingerich and Molly Gingerich, along with one great granddaughter, Raegan Gingerich and a great grandson due in January.

A visitation will be held Wednesday, November 8, 2023 from 12:00 Noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Etzweiler Funeral Homes and Cremation Service, 1111 E. Market Street, York. A graveside service will follow the visitation at Prospect Hill Cemetery in York.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Clair’s memory at the YMCA of York, 90 North Newberry Street, York, PA 17401.

Arrangements by the Etzweiler Funeral Homes and Cremation Service, 1111 East Market Street, York, PA 17403.