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Posted on May 1, 2016 | 1:30 p.m.

George W. Conk Jr. of Santa Barbara, 1920-2016

Source: Conk Family

A lifelong sailor, George Conk mans the tiller in a 2013 photo. (Conk family photo)
A lifelong sailor, George Conk mans the tiller in a 2013 photo. (Conk family photo)

George W. Conk Jr. of Santa Barbara, California, passed away peacefully at home on April 20, 2016. His son, Stephen, and daughter Nancy were with him.

George’s wish was to once again be with Clare, his wife of 70 years, who passed away last year. He had just celebrated his 96th birthday on March 5, surrounded by his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He lived a full life!

Born on March 5, 1920, George grew up in Gerritsen Beach, a poor Irish immigrant community in Brooklyn, New York. He worked on the Brooklyn docks to put himself through Fordham University and, after graduating in 1942, he joined the Navy and served as captain of a sub-chaser in World War II until he was discharged in 1945.

He and Clare married in 1945 and raised a family of five children. He shared with them his love of sailing and boating, spending endless summer days on the water.

In 1972, George moved his business and his family to Santa Barbara from Connecticut — a decision the whole family was grateful for. George sold his business and retired in 1979.

It was an active retirement. He used his free time to travel overseas with Clare and to give back to the community. He served on the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities for the Los Angeles Archdiocese. He volunteered on overnight service at Transition House. For almost 25 years, he was an Advisory Committee member for the City of Santa Barbara’s Parks and Recreation Commission.

For more than 21 years, until he was 94, he visited the sick at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital as a Eucharistic minister for Saint Barbara Parish.

George lived a full life and will be deeply missed by his children, his grandchildren and his great-grandchildren.

A memorial mass will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, June 3, 2016, in Serra Chapel at the Santa Barbara Mission, 2201 Laguna St. in Santa Barbara.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in George’s memory to the Fordham University Financial Aid Campaign for scholarship assistance to students of modest means and Catholic Charities Santa Barbara for their homeless services.


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