Santa Clara Magazine is published in print for alumni and friends of the University. It is updated weekly on the web.
Fred de Funiak ’64 died peacefully but much too soon at home in San Jose on June 13, 2011 at the age of 68. He was born in San Francisco, the youngest of William and Eleanor de Funiak’s three children. He attended St. Ann’s grammar school and Saint Ignatius High School (class of 1960), where he spent far too much time harassing the good priests and nuns who taught him, as anyone who grew up in San Francisco in the 40s and 50s will understand. After graduating from SI, he attended Santa Clara University, where he studied history and played left tackle for the Broncos football team. He was a lifelong SCU fan, even naming his Russian River cabin the Bronco Corral. Post-SCU, he began teaching at James Lick High School, which marked the beginning of his 35-year career with the East Side Union High School District. He spent the last five years of his career as principal of Silver Creek High School. Fred married his first love and high school sweetheart, Terri O’Connor, in 1967. They had four children, Tara, Jill, Matt, and Sue, who were very much the focus of their lives. Fred could often be found coaching softball teams or cheering from the sidelines at soccer games. Fred retired a few years after Terri died in 1998. He spent a great deal of time volunteering for both the Grand Jury and the Elections Commission for the City of San Jose. Fred also enjoyed playing bridge and golf—doing the former much better than the latter—and taking road trips with his friends, whom he called the "gang of reprobates." He especially loved being Pops to his six grandchildren. Though his health had declined in the past year, he had many visits from friends and family who let him know that he was loved. His sense of humor, his stories, and his off-key singing will be missed by all. Fred is survived by his son Matt (Christa Salo) and daughters Tara Komar (Matt), Jill Croft (Mike), and Sue Cumbo (Andrew), along with six grandchildren, Emma, Will, Aidan, Addie, Drew and Charlie. He is also survived by his brother Bill de Funiak (Barbara) and sister Olivia Fox.