John "Norm" Andregg
CA Licensed Land Surveyor (PLS 2515)
Born: December 21, 1912. Died: March 25, 2002.
Sunday, April 7th, 2002 marked the celebration of the long, colorful and adventurous life of an icon in California's Land Surveying industry. John Norman Andregg, or "Norm" as he was known to most since childhood, was born in Auburn, California on December 21, 1912 to parents Sarah Jane Nielson and John Henry Andregg. He passed away March 25th at Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital in Auburn.
He was a product of the old Auburn Elementary School and Placer High School in Auburn, and the University of California at Berkley, where he earned a degree in Mining Engineering.
When he left UC-Berkeley, the nation was in the throes of the Great Depression and he lit out for Alaska and its promises for gold mining riches. He joked later in life that he had recovered more gold from his pant cuffs after working in the Sierra foothills than he ever recovered in Alaska. When the Alaska riches didn't materialize, he joined the U.S. Navy in 1936 and earned his aviator's wings. He flew amphibious PBY's in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II and was the pilot of one such reconnaissance aircraft during the crucial Battle of Midway Island in June of 1942. He later retired from the Navy as a commander.
In 1948, he bought the surveying operation of a previous County Surveyor, Jerome Barieau. He changed the name to Andregg Inc., which is in business to this day; although he retired and sold it some 16 years ago. Norm Andregg and his protégé associates comprised the top land-surveying firm in the Sierra foothills for many years. They also did considerable work in the high Sierra including most of the land surveying work on the California side of Lake Tahoe. Andregg Inc. continues to be a leader in the Land Surveying and Geomatics industry.
Norm, who was twice widowed, is survived by his daughter Sharon Clark of Homer Alaska; grandchildren Angela O'Blenis of Bakersfield and John Farros of South Lake Tahoe; great grandchildren Kaitlyn Elizabeth O'Blenis; a stepson, Courtney Lewis of Sun Valley, Nevada; and his long time companion, Carmen Wilson.
His daughter Mrs. Clark, with a wink and a grin said of his wake, "one of dad's last wishes was to have all his friends and enemies have some drinks on him." It is unlikely that Norm had many enemies. He certainly did have copious friends, many of whom he served as mentor while they learned the land surveying profession. His passing is a great loss to all of us. Rest in peace dear friend.
Reprinted from the California Surveyor, Summer 2002 Issue #135, all rights reserved California Land Surveyors Association
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