In response to my post, Did Keith Raniere’s Father Die in April?, a reader sent me some pictures and commented:
“Looks like Keith’s dad has passed away. It also looks like the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. James Raniere sporting the Jesus haircut his son Keith often had.”
The reader also sent this screenshot [below] from Family Tree, showing a page on Keith’s stepmother, Sydney Reynold Raniere. It shows a relative James J. Raniere.
An obituary published earlier this year of a James Joseph Raniere had only scant information about the deceased, but it increasingly looks like it was Keith’s dad, who appears to have the initial J [Joseph?] as his middle initial.
James Joseph RANIERE
MAY 9, 1932 – APRIL 10, 2020
James Joseph RANIERE was born on May 9, 1932 and passed away on April 10, 2020 and is under the care of Frank E. Campbell – The Funeral Chapel.
A source at MDC, familiar with the visitors Keith received since he arrived there shortly after his arrest in March 2018, told Frank Report that no one named Raniere ever visited Keith at MDC. In fact, he had very few visitors other than his attorneys.
No matter how bad a rascal Keith turned out to be, there must have been a time when father and son bonded together. When James played dad and little Keith was the wonderful, beloved son.
How did James feel when he learned his only child was arrested for sex trafficking and other crimes that would likely land him in prison for the rest of his life?
Did he weep for his lost son? Or did he come to terms years ago that his son was really a bad actor, one destined sooner or later for this end?
Did he blame himself for being a poor father? Did he reproach himself for things he should have done but did not do for his son?
Did he know anything at all? One source who knew James Raniere said he was slipping mentally for a few years and may have had dementia.
We don’t know and may not be able to find out.
It had been my intention to interview James Raniere about his son, but somehow I did not get around to making the call, which might have been rebuffed.
Now it looks like it is too late and many of the secrets of his childhood that only parents know are lost.
Keith’s mother, Vera, died in 1978 when Keith was 18. He often told the story that he was 16, however.
In a subsequent post, we will explore some of Keith’s claims. After all, he was able to found a cult and make it run successfully for 20 years, sucking in all kinds of people, mostly women, many extremely dedicated to him.
This is worth studying for it may reveal how such things happen as a psychopath getting control of followers, who think he is the most wonderful man in the world and leads them to destruction.
Maybe his father thought the same thing about his boy, little Keith, that he was more than an average child, he was a born prince.