John W. von Holdt Sr., 78, founder and chairman of Plas-Tool Co. of Niles, Ill., died July 15 in Glenview, Illinois.
Von Holdt is the only three-time winner of the prestigious Bachner Award for plastic product design. In 1990 he was presented with the Society of Plastics Engineers Mold Maker of the Year Award. In 1991 he was unanimously nominated by his peers to receive the Moldmaking Industry Achievement Award, said a news release from the Plastics Academy, which presented the award to him.
He was recognized as an inventive and creative mold maker with more than 55 U.S. patents and hundreds of corresponding foreign patents in mold and product design. From 1969-71 he served as National Chairman of the Moldmakers Division of the Washington-based Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.
He completed a plastics engineering program at Northwestern University Technological Institute and apprenticed at various machine-tool shops. After his U.S. Army service in the Pacific during World War II, he founded Plas-Tool, a mold maker and injection molder, in 1950.
Plast-Tool now has mold exports to Europe, North and South America and the Far East.
He is survived by his wife, Pauline; son, John Jr., president of Plas-Tool; daughter, Janice Anderson; and three grandchildren.