Obituary: Frank Joseph Chufar, Jr.
Frank Joseph Chufar, Jr., aka ‘Sonny,’ died peacefully June 3, 2012 in Santa Barbara, CA at the age of 83.
He lived his last 4 months near the Santa Barbara Mission, listening to the Mission Bells, with his daughter Caroline who took care of him, along with Cody, his companion dog; cats, Starlight & Sunshine, and his friend Pat Peteler who graciously opened her home to him.
Frank was born April 10, 1929 in Pontiac, Michigan and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He married Esther ‘Nicki’ Neukom October 14, 1950. Like his father, he was a U.S. Navy Seabee from 1953 ~ 1958 and served as a firefighter on the Beverly Hills Fire Department from 1959 ~ 1962. He also held a California Real Estate License.
He raised his 4 children in Carpinteria where they enjoyed the fruits of his labor — their Shetland pony, horses, farm animals and the family swimming pool. He was a Master Mason for Carpinteria Lodge 444 and a member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church.
Dad followed in his father’s footsteps by working as an Ironworker and Welding Contractor from 1962 ~ 1985. He then worked for St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Carpinteria and subsequently for his friends Larry & Bonnie Donovan at Donovan Electric. In 1990 he moved to Topaz Lake, Nevada, where he had a boat and was an active fisherman. He also enjoyed and was good at rolling the dice and loved to play the Wheel of Fortune slot machine.
Frank is survived by his former spouse, Esther “Nicki” Chufar; his children, Joe, John (Robert), Bonnie (David), and Caroline; former daughter-in-law, Val Knapp; grandchildren, Carrie Ann Morgridge, Bethany and Moriah Robinson; his sister, Lena Lewis (Jim) of Waterford, Michigan, and several nieces and nephews; life-long friend Caroline Hendricks-Ross, as well as his faithful sunrise coffee drinker, Bill McGee, and his best friends, Carol & Rick Barringer of Topaz Lake, Nevada.
Dad never complained. When asked how he was feeling, he would always say, “I’m feelin’ great. No problems that I know of.”
Dad was one of a kind, a true, honest, and giving person, a gentleman. He will always be our Hero. The world is a better place because of him.
A special ‘Thank you’ to Angelica Ordonez, Sheryl Trevethan-Scott, the Visiting Nurse and Hospice and Serenity House for their compassionate care.
Services will be held on Friday, June 15th at 1:00 p.m. at the Carpinteria Cemetery, 1501 Cravens Lane.