- Date of Birth:
- February 11, 1920
John Schnabel (born on Feb. 11, 1920 in Kansas) is an American miner and television star. The 96-year-old mining legend was featured on the show Gold Rush on Discovery, along with his family. John bought the Gold Nugget Mine in Alaska when he was given a triple bypass at age 68, and a doctor advised him to stay active. John is also a military veteran. He sadly passed away in his sleep at age 96 at his hom in Alaska on Mar. 18, 2016.
Best Known For:
John is best known for being the patriarch on Discovery’s his show Gold Rush.
John was born in Kansas to a wheat farmer who ran to Alaska when he was being prosecuted for making bootleg alcohol during prohibition. When he was 18, he joined his father at his Alaskan saw mill where he worked until he joined the Air Force after Pearl Harbor was bombed. He married Erma Dire upon his return, and had five children. He purchased the mine when he was 68, and he gave it to his grandson Parker when his health began to decline. John passed away on Mar. 18, 2016 peacefully in his sleep at 96 years old.