Ronald Gabriel Kavadas, age 85, passed away on January 26, 2020, in Porterville, California. His love for his family remained the central aspect of his entire life.
Ron was born on May 12, 1934, in Grand Forks, North Dakota, to parents Gabriel and Devina Kavadas. He graduated from Central High School in 1952. Ron received his Bachelor’s Degree from University of North Dakota (UND) in 1955 and later that summer married Marilyn Thrall. A year later, they had their first daughter Kathy and moved to Little Falls, MN in 1957. Later, they had 2 more children, Julie and Tom. In 1965, he moved his family to California, first to Tulare for 3 years, then on to Porterville in 1968. He has lived in Porterville for over 50 years.
Family, education and athletics were the important facets of Ron’s life. He played sports throughout his life - playing football in high school, college and in the Canadian Football League in Montreal. Ron was inducted into the University of North Dakota Hall of Fame and played in and coached championship teams throughout his career. He taught and coached at Monache and Porterville High Schools, as well as schools in Minnesota and North Dakota. Hard work, determination, dedication and responsibility where all traits he personified as well as taught his students. It was important to him to give the students and kids in the community the opportunity to play and learn the lessons in sports. Learning to swim or bat or run their own race, or play on a team, building individual strengths and adding to the teams’ successes were the important lessons.
He enjoyed traveling with Marilyn to Greece, England, Scotland, Ireland, and many locations throughout the United States. They enjoyed visiting family and friends, attending ball games or working at National AAU Junior Olympic Track Meets. He and Marilyn, and his brother Don Kavadas and his wife, Pat, ran many local and national track meets. Their lives revolved around teaching and coaching and giving to the community by teaching the youth both in athletics and education. But his favorite days were spent at home with his entire family around him; talking, swimming, cooking, spending the day together and with him.
Ron is survived by his daughter, Kathy Wolf (Chuck) of Porterville, CA; daughter, Julie Anderson of Huntington Beach, CA; and son, Thomas Kavadas, of Lake Almanor, CA; sister Joanne (Kavadas) Peterson of Santa Cruz, CA, brother-in-law Robert “Buck” Thrall (Phyllis “Elaine”) of Huntington Beach, CA; grandchildren Shannon Shuklian (Brock), Nicholas Kavadas, Kyra, Alec and Rebecca Anderson, and great-grand daughter, Charlotte Shuklian and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his wife Marilyn (Thrall) Kavadas, his son-in-law, Gordon “Andy” Anderson of Huntington Beach, CA, his brothers Donald Kavadas of Porterville and Gabriel Kavadas, Jr. of Grand Forks, ND, his brothers-in-law, Glenn Thrall and Dwight “Pete” Thrall, his sisters-in-law, Marilyn “Dolly” Thrall, Pat Kavadas, Arla Thrall and Phyllis Thrall. A grave-side service will be held at 10:00 am on Monday, February 3, 2020 at Hillcrest in Porterville Cemetery. Pastor Dave Mast will officiate.
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