WILLIAM BOYD LAMPE
November 28, 1929 – December 18, 2008
When I was a young child, I spent most of my days playing outside in the forest and at the beach. On rainy-er days, I would draw. My father noticed my artistic abilities; he taught me how to draw with “perspective” beginning with how to draw the chimney on a rooftop. This new knowledge inspired me to no end! A couple of months before my father passed away, a friend came to visit him. During the course of their conversation, my father told his friend a story about how as a child, my father had wanted to become an artist, however, his father discouraged him from becoming an artist because “there was no money in being an artist” and that he had to do more practical things that could support a family. Surprised upon overhearing this, I said to my father, “Dad,…guess what? I’ve been an artist my entire adult life and I’m actually making a living at it! – I got to live and be that artist FOR you!” In awe, we both searched one another’s eyes and… smiled.
The following is my father’s eulogy written by my sisters Irene Jean Lampe and Deanna Lampe:
Juneau resident William “Bill” Boyd Lampe died at home Dec. 18. 2008, in Juneau. He was 79. Bill was born Nov. 28, 1929, in Santa Ana, Manila, Philippines, to Patricia Rizal and Frederic J. Lampe. His mother was first cousin to the Philippine national hero Jose Rizal. William’s father was a descendant of German immigrants to Minnesota and a medic in the U.S. Army during the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Insurrection. He survived the Japanese invasion of the Philippines in the early 1940s. Japanese soldiers were going house to house, breaking down doors and killing able-bodied men on sight. When they entered the Lampe house, they were amazed at his father’s height, 7 feet 3 inches tall, and took William and his father to a prison camp. His father threw him over a barbed wire fence to save him from dying in prison. “Run for your life and never look back,” his father said to him. That was the last time Bill saw his father alive.
William and his family fled the city for a tree house he had built in the mountains and lived there to be safe from the Japanese. They enjoyed living in the jungle forest, one of the happiest times of his life. After the death of his father and the end of WWII, the Lampe family decided to leave the Philippines because they wanted to start a new life enticed by the belief that the “streets were paved with gold” in America. The Lampe Family sailed on the “SS General John Pope” to the U.S. It took them 17 days (August 1-17, 1945) to travel across the Pacific Ocean and up the Pacific Coast to Seattle.
William came to Alaska in the summer of 1947 to work in the salmon fishing industry in Kodiak and, in later years, Excursion Inlet, Hoonah and Juneau. He worked at Excursion Inlet Cannery, where he met his future in-laws, Juan and Mary Sarabia. Juan was also from the Philippines so William was on good terms with him. William would often buy moccasins handmade by Mary and send them to his Seattle relatives. In 1948, William met their daughter, Irene, in Seattle and jokingly said to her, “I’m going to marry you one day!!!” Little did he know they would marry in 1955. In addition to being a cannery worker, he worked as a sawmill laborer, cook, dishwasher, power troller and maintenance man at the old Federal Building, school district and eventually retiring from Alascom. William was the last surviving of the old-time Filipino men who came to Southeast Alaska and married Tlingit women. He knew many of the Filipino old-timers of Juneau, many who were employed in his father’s brick manufacturing business in Manila. “An end of an era is truly gone,” his family said.
William had many hobbies, passions, and expensive tastes. He loved to fish and often would go fishing alone in a suit. He would come home with many fish and not a stain on his Italian 3-piece wool suit or Italian loafers. Sometimes he caught so much fish or crab, he would have to give it away because the freezer was full. Every few years, he would have to upgrade to a bigger and better boat, all named “Clarissa Rizal.” And then came various cars such as a Volkswagen, Honda hatchback and Prelude, a red convertible sports car, and finally the Jimmy SUV. He enjoyed gardening around his house and spent tons of money on fertilizer, plants, seeds, etc. On his acre of property, he had hand-dug 4 feet down and removed all the rocks, stumps, weeds, etc. The soil produced over the 40 years is the best organic, loamy stuff; no wonder all his plants were humungous! When he wasn’t gardening, he had to get all dolled up to go to bingo or even if he had no place to go. He also played card games, gambling in places like the Filipino Community, the bait & tackle shop across from Sweeney’s Bar, some barber shops, and the old New York Tavern. In later years, he was a bingo maniac who went every night except Thursdays. William enjoyed putting up decorations for Halloween, Christmas and New Years. The house, inside and out, was all lit up; it is surprising that the house did not burn down. He was also a very good cook of Filipino food.
William is preceded in death by his parents Patricia and Fred Lampe, his brothers Charles Lampe, George Lampe, and Fred Lampe, Jr., his sisters Rosella Lampe and Lily Villaflor; nephew Santiago Villaflor, Jr., nieces Selena Villaflor Lundberg, Henrietta Villaflor, Rosemarie Villaflor Newsom, and his cats Midnight, Key-kat, and Kobe. He is survived by his wife, Irene Sarabia Lampe; children and their spouses, Robert and Sarah Lampe, of Hoonah, Richard Lampe, of Hoonah, Clarissa and Bill Hudson, of Pagosa Springs, Colo., Timothy Lampe, Irene J. Lampe, and Deanna Lampe, of Juneau; grandchildren and their spouses, Kahlil Hudson and Mikiko Ellis of Pagosa Springs, Lily Hudson and Ishmael Hope, of Juneau, Ursala Hudson, of Durango, Colo., Amber Lampe, of Anchorage, and Brooke Lampe, of Juneau; two great-grandchildren, Elizabeth Hope, of Juneau, and Violet Hudson, of Pagosa Springs; nephews and their spouses, Richard Villaflor, of Seattle, George Jr. and Jane Lampe, of Seattle, Fred and Gloria Villaflor, of Phoenix, and Mel Tandog of Stockton; nieces and their spouses, Marlene and Charles Edwards, of Seattle, Patricia and Philip Davis, of Los Angeles, and Jenny and Michael Bradshaw, of Sacramento; and many grandnephews and grandnieces. He also had a cat, Bingo.
Pallbearers: Lee Bagoyo, Robert Beierly, Thomas Beierly, Donald Gregory, Thomas Mills, Jr., Fernando Pintang.
Honorary pallbearers: Bob Beierly, Richard Conn, Adrian D’Cafango, Robert James, Sam Lamebull, Flor Lampe, Tony Menacio, Sr., Aengus Saya, Buddy & Jeanette Tabor.