Antique Vintage 03

Carl F. Gruning, O.D.

August 2, 1941 ~ June 18, 2021 (age 79)


Carl F. Gruning, O.D., age 79, of Fairfield, beloved husband of Barbara Kuris Gruning, passed away peacefully Friday, June 18, 2021 at Yale New Haven Bridgeport Hospital.  Born in New York City, the son of the late Carl Herbert Gruning and Mary Snowber Gruning, he had been a Fairfield/Southport resident since 1967.  Carl approached each day with enthusiasm for life, high energy and a fun-loving spirit that was contagious.  Dr. Gruning received his Doctor of Optometry from the New England College of Optometry and successfully owned his practice for many years, Eye Care Associates of Fairfield PC.  He spent decades working in vision therapy, pediatrics and rehabilitative optometry.  He served as a Clinical Professor at the State University of New York for 40 years, and previously served on NECO Board of Trustees.  Dr. Gruning combined his passion for vision training and travel by lecturing throughout the world.  He derived great pleasure in bettering the lives of many of the children he treated throughout his career. He was a Fellow, American Academy of Optometry, Fellow and Past President College of Optometrists in Vision Development, and a Distinguished Practitioner, National Academy of Practitioners.  Dr. Gruning was an active volunteer in the Fairfield Community.  He was a member of the Fairfield Rotary Club where he enjoyed taking in many exchange students over the years, and a member of the Fairfield Chamber of Commerce.  He was a former member of the Patterson Club, and loved playing tennis, running, bike riding and the outdoors.  In addition to his loving wife Barbara, he will be sadly missed by two beloved children, David Gruning and his husband, Stephen Keefe of Millbrook, NY and Karen Gruning Biggs and her husband, Charles of Fairfield; predeceased by a granddaughter, Sierra Biggs, he is survived by two grandchildren, Pearson Biggs and Coco Biggs; two sisters, Patricia Higgins of Katonah, NY and Suzanne Toomey and her husband, Thomas of Galloway, NJ; a brother, Michael Gruning of Santa Monica, CA as well as several nieces and nephews. The family will hold visiting hours on Tuesday, July 13, 2021 between 4-7pm at Spear Miller Funeral Home, 39 South Benson Road in Fairfield. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in honor of Carl's granddaughter Sierra to: The Sierra Aileen Taintor Biggs Memorial Fund, c/o Bridgeport Hospital Foundation, 267 Grant Street, Bridgeport, CT 06610. For information or to sign an online register, please visit,


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Carl F. Gruning, O.D., please visit our floral store.


July 13, 2021

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Spear Miller Funeral Home
39 South Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824


The Sierra Aileen Taintor Biggs Memorial Fund
c/o Bridgeport Hospital Foundation, 267 Grant Street, Bridgeport CT 06610

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