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Joseph Warren Bartleson, Jr.
Passed away March 20, 2014 in St. Bernardine's Hospital in San Bernardino, California at the age of 92 years old.
He was born May 16, 1921 in Ft. Myers, FL, the son of Joseph Warren, Sr. and Mary Isabell (Maybelle) Hendry Bartleson. Joe spent most of his childhood in Ft. Myers, but also spent much time in other home locations. He and his family spent time in Tryon, NC, Columbus, NM, Austin, TX, and St. Petersburg, FL. He was the older brother of Elizabeth (Bettie) Bartleson, now deceased.
In 1939, at the age of 18, Joe moved to Buffalo, NY to work for the Curtis Wright Aircraft Co., building P40 fighter aircraft (Flying Tiger). While skating with friends at Rollerland skating rink, he met Virginia Ruth Schutta. They were married on September 28, 1942. Joe was called to serve his country and ten days after he was married he joined the
Air Corps to support the war effort in India flying war material and supplies to the Chinese. He made 32 trips over the "hump" while serving in WW II.
After the war, Joe returned to Ruth in Buffalo, and together, they started their family with their daughter, Sharon, in 1946. Two years later, their son Lloyd was born. Joe continued his military career in the Air Force and the family followed his assignments, having homes in Florida, Panama, South Carolina and California. With an assignment at Norton AFB, the Bartleson family finally settled in San Bernardino and established their permanent home there in 1956. After retiring from the Air Force in 1964, Joe operated a Union 76 service station and then moved back into aircraft maintenance with Lockheed for 10 years.
Joe was an active and social person his whole life. He was an avid hunter and fisherman, and pursued these activities throughout his life. He only stopped hunting when he suffered a heart attack pulling a deer out of a canyon in Colorado when he was 81. He golfed 18 hole rounds until he was 91 and held a 7 handicap when he was younger. Joe followed his family tradition of Masonry and served in many positions during his long tenure, including Master of San Bernardino Lodge 178. He was a long-time member of the San Bernardino Elk's Lodge 836 and a founding member of Quails Unlimited, a hunting and gun enthusiast organization. Joe was irrepressibly outgoing, ready to engage anyone in a goodhearted conversation once he had established a common ground. He would invariably find common ground with anyone.
Joe is pre-deceased by his beloved wife, Ruth and survived by his daughter, Sharon Hardy (Brian) of Los Gatos, CA, his son Lloyd Bartleson (Catherine) of Beaverton, OR, his grandson Brian Hardy of San Diego, CA, his granddaughter Jennifer Howard (Michael) of Alpharetta, GA, and three great grandchildren, Olivia, Shawn, and Colin Howard, all of Alpharetta, GA.
A memorial service will be held in Joe's honor at Bobbitt Memorial Chapel, 1299 E. Highland Ave. San Bernardino, CA at 11:00 AM on April 10. Private interment is at Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside, CA. Please call Bobbitt Memorial Chapel at (909) 882-3761 for any further information. To leave a condolence on Joe's Memorial Page, please visit
Published in San Bernardino Sun on Apr. 6, 2014
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"Uncle Joe wil be missed and I know he knew I have thought of him through the years, his niece"
- Dee Ann Spencer Ruth
"joe was a fine man and wonderful neighbor for many years. he will be greatly missed."
- jim jacka
"May your memories sustain you during this difficult time and God's hope for everlasting life bring you..."
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