Reader: Looks Like Keith Raniere’s Dad Passed Away

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 Vanguard

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.

James Raniere with his second wife, Keith’s stepmother, Sydney Reynolds 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.

 link to me from Frank E. Campbell – The Funeral Chapel:


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.

The fact that James Raniere was in his late 80s when he died and that he died in NYC at the height of the coronavirus pandemic there, makes one wonder if he died of COVID-19.One of the saddest things perhaps in this tale is that James Raniere never got to see his boy after he was arrested.

The last known meeting of the two was in January 2017, when James came for the memorial services of Pamela Cafritz, who he had worked with during their Consumers’ Buyline days.

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.

1969 Raniere

1977 raniere

1978 raniere

About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • So, as to these photos [do tell from whence they hither, Frank] first I couldn’t help but notice the demon glimmer in Sir James’ Raniere Sr.’s kindly brow as he blames the gizzard next to him for the indiscreet wine spill on their fine table linen.

    But instigated by the curious turquoise dots on the images herewith of these royal or royal posers — I know not yet which title best befits — I did a bit of research on the ornament dangling from Madam Raniere the II’s throat (presumably James had only two wives, the pictured “Sydney Reynolds” and Keith’s poor Mumsy, Vera ?).

    Syndey’s accessory appears to be an exact replica of a Maltese Cross design originating with the…

    To be continue, Frank I sent you pics for this fanciful story.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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