John Clifton Rentz ASHEBORO, NC - Mr. John Clifton Rentz, 95, of Asheboro NC, Varnville SC, Salfords, Surrey, England, Louisville KY, and Laurel MS, passed away peacefully on the morning of Thursday, October 7, 2021, surrounded in love by his family, after a long life, well-lived. John was born June 15, 1926 in Savannah, Georgia, the son of William Harrell Rentz and Elizabeth Miller Rentz. He grew up in his hometown, Varnville SC. He was very happily married to his beloved Lalla Vincent Rentz, also of Varnville, from 1947 until her death in 2018. Together they created a loving family, including John Harrell Rentz (Eric Lee Hyman) of Holly Springs, NC and Silver Spring, MD, Fay Rentz (Cynthia Lee Sanner) of Chicago, IL, Cynthia Rentz Falgout of Durham, NC, Helen Rentz (Susan Margaret Fisher) of Apex, NC, and Lydia Rentz Whitley (Bryan Dees Whitley) of Greensboro, NC. John is also survived by three grandchildren- Steven Harrell Rentz (James Christopher Garzia) of Apex, NC, Hannah Elizabeth Falgout of Durham, NC, and Mary Katherine Falgout of Washington DC - and one great-grandchild, Gavin James Rentz of Apex, NC. John was predeceased by his wife, father, and mother, as well as two older siblings and their spouses, William Harrell Rentz, Jr. (Lucile Cornell Rentz Lott) of Waycross, GA, and Elizabeth Rentz Rhodes (William Luther Rhodes, Jr.) of Varnville, SC. He graduated from Varnville High School before serving his country in the US Army in Germany during World War II (39th Infantry Regiment of the 9th Infantry Division). After the war, he married his sweetheart and graduated with honors from Clemson College with a degree in Electrical Engineering. During the first half of his career, he worked for the General Electric Company in Asheboro, NC, Salfords, Surrey, England, and Louisville KY. He invented patented hardware and revolutionary techniques for producing safe, high-quality, reliable electric blankets. During the second half of his career, he was employed by Northern Electric Company (later Sunbeam and Oster) in Laurel, MS, continuing his work with improving electric blanket production and focusing on small appliance quality control. The hymn Others, a favorite of his mother, truly expresses the essence of his life. After serving in Southern Baptist churches in Varnville, Asheboro, and Laurel, he became a proud member of Our Home Universalist Unitarian Church in Ellisville, MS. The Methodist ministry of Reverend D. L. Dykes of Louisiana also had a profound influence on his life. John ("Johnny," "Ole John," "Dad," "Grandpa," "Papa," "Papa Rentz," "GGPa," "Uncle John," "Papa Doodle," "JC," or "Mr. John") will long be remembered for his laughter and storytelling, his life-improving inventions, his intellectual curiosity and life-long love of learning, his passion for gardening, grape vines and fig trees, his artistry expressed through sketching, painting, and woodworking, his exuberance for sailing and fishing, his sage advice, his integrity and steadfast "down to earth" principles, as well as his eternal love for his "sweetheart" Lalla, whom he first met when she was three years old and he was five. Graveside funeral services will be conducted at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 16, 2021, at Varnville Cemetery. Beginning at 12:00 noon, family and friends are invited to visit with the Rentz children and grandchildren at Varnville Cemetery. The family will also enjoy visitation at the cemetery after the service. Peeples-Rhoden Funeral Home of Hampton, SC is handling funeral arrangements. The family would be devastated if anyone became ill after attending this graveside service. For that reason, all funeral-related gatherings will be held outdoors. Even though we will be outdoors, the family requests that everyone wear masks (which will be provided if needed). Memorials may be made to Hospice of Randolph County (416 Vision Drive, Asheboro, NC 27203), Varnville Cemetery Association (P.O. Box 366 Varnville, SC), Our Home Universalist Unitarian Church (2134 Highway 29 North, Ellisville, MS 39437), the American Lung Association
, or Crossroad Retirement Community (1302 Old Cox Road, Asheboro, NC 27205). The family would like to acknowledge Billy and Betty Page and the entire Crossroad Retirement Community team for their love and support since 2009. Visit our guestbook at legacy.com/obituaries/charleston
Published by Charleston Post & Courier from Oct. 13 to Oct. 14, 2021.