Thomas George Becker
Thomas George Becker, born December 29, 1937 in Hamilton, Ohio to Phillip Paul Becker and Luella Helen (Woodruff) passed peacefully at home on July 25 th, 2019 with his wife and children by his side.
Tom was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Jane, and brothers Jacque, Richard, and Michael. He is survived by his wife Melinda Marie (Gowman), daughter Leslie Colasse and her partner Robert Haggarty, son Jason Becker and his wife Gina (Turrone), as well as Tom’s brother Gerald, sister Karen, and grandsons Cayden Colasse and Tyson and Miles Becker.
Tom was raised in a modest two bedroom craftsman bungalow by a blue collar Union Carpenter and stay-at-home mother. He attended the local parochial schools and served as an altar boy for many years, where he began what would be a lifelong relationship with God.
Tom served in the Navy as an Aviation Machinists Mate during peacetime between the Korean and Vietnam Wars on Midway Island (now a National Wildlife Reserve) where he gained a deeper appreciation for the beauty of nature. He was honorably discharged in August of 1963 after a brief delay during which time the government considered recalling him to serve in the Vietnam War.
Upon discharge, Tom returned to the mainland settling in El Centro, California where he met his stunning wife Melinda. The couple were married on July 30 th, 1966 and moved to San Diego shortly thereafter where Tom received a Bachelors of Science in Accounting at San Diego State. It was during their time in San Diego that Tom and Melinda’s first child, Leslie, was born and that Tom began a career with Frazee Paint & Wallcovering. His position with Frazee led Tom and his family to Santa Barbara, where he was asked to open and manage a newly acquired branch store at the corner of Ortega and State Streets – the site of the now-vacant Macy’s. Tom used to enjoy recanting the story of his first year managing the store and trying to explain to Frazee Corporate that he would need to shut down the Santa Barbara store for “some local tradition that his employees were telling him about” – Old Spanish Fiesta Days – and, how “back in the day”, the Margaritas would be made by the gallon in the paint shakers.
In 1975 Tom and Melinda’s dream to have a second child was fulfilled when their son Jason was born. Shortly after Jason’s birth, Tom began a more personal relationship with his Lord and Savior that would continue to grow and develop for the rest of his life. He continued to work in the painting trades until he secured a position at Goleta Valley Hospital, where he supported the hospital as a painter within their Facilities Management group until retirement.
Tom will be remembered for his appreciation of the simple things – friends, family, meat and potatoes, a good banana cream pie, and a light hearted joke among friends. Those who were fortunate enough to know Tom will remember him for his phenomenal blue eyes, warm smile, patience, light-hearted spirit and humble demeanor. He was defined by a strong commitment to family, deep respect for the blue collar worker, great appreciation for nature as a manifestation of God’s handiwork, and a strong moral compass.
Tom’s wife and children would like to acknowledge and thank the many doctors and nurses of Cottage Hospital, as well as, friends and caregivers who supported Tom and our family since his stroke in 2016. In lieu of flowers, please consider a gift to The Friendship Center of Montecito, Our Daily Bread Ministries, or The Ohio Valley Construction Education Foundation (OVCEF).
A memorial service for family and friends is being planned for late Fall. If you are interested in attending, please contact Leslie at: firstname.lastname@example.org.