January 20, 1923 - May 16, 2019
Carlos Bryant Amspoker, age 96, died of pneumonia on May 16, 2019, in John Muir Hospital, Concord CA. He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Barbara Jean Viera Amspoker.
Carlos was born in Silt, Colorado, on January 20, 1923, to parents Ross Amspoker and Ethel Smith and was 5th in a family of 6 siblings. He grew up in Long Beach, CA where he graduated from Long Beach High School at the age of 17 and attended Cal Poly until 1941.
When World War 2 started, Carlos joined the U. S. Marine Corps where he became a fighter pilot flying Corsairs off an aircraft carrier in the Pacific. As a 1st Lieutenant, he earned the Distinguished Flying Cross for his participation in the Marshall Islands theater. After 3 years of active duty, he remained in the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve where he was trained to fly jets. He retired from military service as a Marine Captain in December 1957.
He completed his education at the University of California, Berkeley, where he graduated in 1947 with a Degree in Chemical Engineering. Thereafter, he applied for work at Shell Chemical Corporation, Martinez CA, where he met his future wife, Barbara. They were married in November 1949.
They have 3 children: Kristine Kirkham (Richard) in Gig Harbor, WA, Kirk Amspoker (Dawn) in San Jose, CA, and Scott Amspoker in Albuquerque, NM. His legacy continues with grandchildren: Allison Bryan, Michael Kirkham (Laura), Christopher Kirkham, and Geoffrey Kirkham (Brittany), as well as great-grandchildren Addy, Nick and Lily.
Carlos' 30 year career with Shell Chemical transferred him and his family to many different locations in the U. S. He finally retired in 1978 as Manager of the Shell Chemical Plant in Martinez. But he never got over his love of flying and his family shared that interest as well. Upon retirement, after wisely determining he could not afford to purchase an airplane, he decided to build his own plane. For the next two years he was referred to as "that man who is building an airplane in his garage" at his home in Martinez. He and Barbara flew that little homebuilt airplane all over the United States and Mexico. He alternated that lifestyle by joining the Martinez Bocce Federation where he has been successfully playing bocce ball for 30 years.
There will be no memorial services at this time. He will be buried at a later date in the U. S. National Cemetery in Sacramento Valley in Dixon, CA. View the online memorial for Carlos Amspoker