GOTTWALD, Bruce C. Jr., 61, died suddenly on Sunday, October 20, 2019, while traveling in Kansas. Born December 6, 1957, in Richmond, Bruce was the eldest son of Nancy and Bruce C. Gottwald Sr. The father of six children, who meant everything to him, Bruce lived life with passion and discipline, seeking excellence in everything he did. An avid outdoor sportsman, he traveled the world hunting, fishing and in earlier years, mountain climbing and scuba diving. He was quietly proud of twice completing full Ironman triathlons. His life was defined by his love for faith, family, friends, humor and travel and he will be deeply missed by everyone whose life he touched. Bruce graduated from St. Christopher's School in 1976 and from Virginia Military Institute with the great class of 1981, after transferring from the University of Virginia. He played soccer and lacrosse at VMI and later, he proudly served on VMI's Board of Visitors and as president of the Keydet Club. He began his career in 1981, at Ethyl Corporation. After earning his MBA from William and Mary in 1984, he returned to Ethyl where he held numerous positions, including roles with First Colony Life Insurance in Lynchburg. In 1992, he was elected to Ethyl's Board of Directors and became President and CEO of First Colony Corporation, which became an independent, public company. He always felt the highlight of his career was working with the great people there. After its sale to GE Capital, he founded Jonah, LLC, a private investment management company, which he managed until his death. In 2005, he was named Chairman of First National Bank of Hempstead County, Arkansas. Bruce also served as a director of Albemarle Corporation, Paragon Mutual Funds, Signet Banking Corporation and Southern Bridge Capital. In addition to his parents, Bruce is survived by his brothers, Mark H. Gottwald and Thomas E. "Teddy" Gottwald; six children, Nancy S. Hartt (Charlie), Caroline C. Rider (Ned), Bruce C."B" Gottwald III (Annie), William "Hays" Gottwald, Kimberly C. "Kimmee" Gottwald and Martha E. "Lily" Gottwald; their mother, Kimberly Clifton Gottwald; and three grandchildren, Olivia, William and Charles Hartt III. Bruce also leaves his devoted companion, Brooke Hanckel; and seven nephews and five nieces, whom he adored. In addition to serving VMI, Bruce gave generously to his community. He served on numerous boards, including Union Presbyterian Seminary, St. Catherine's School, the Children's Museum of Richmond and more recently, the William and Mary Foundation, the YMCA of Greater Richmond and as director of World Pediatric Project's World Ambassador Society. Most important to him were the numerous gifts which he made anonymously to help those in need. He was also a lifelong member and elder at First Presbyterian Church. Bruce was most happy when spending time with family and friends, especially at the Pamunkey Game Club, Old Town Farm and Pocahontas Hill Farm. Everyone will miss his corny sense of humor and will (mostly) miss his practical jokes. A funeral service will be held 10 a.m. Friday, October 25, at First Presbyterian Church, 4602 Cary Street Road, with burial following in Hollywood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions honoring Bruce may be made to the VMI Foundation, 304 Letcher Ave, P.O. Box 932, Lexington, Va. 24450; or the World Pediatric Project, 7201 Glen Forest Drive #304, Richmond, Va. 23226. We love you, Dad.
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