On May 4, 2019, our beloved Dad, Clifford Bradley Asselstine, of Nipomo passed away peacefully at 100 years of age.
Born in Oakville Manitoba, Canada on June 19, 1918 to Harold and Edith Asselstine, Dad immigrated with his parents, siblings (Margie and Bob), and Aunt and Uncle (Harry and Babe) to the United States in the 1920's.
Living a short time in the Arizona desert, Dad loved to share his boyhood adventures of seeking buried treasures and wrangling wild burros. Throughout his life, Dad never ceased searching for treasure and prosperity. Eventually settling in the Santa Ynez Valley on the Mitchell Ranch, Dad spent his teenage and early adult years breaking colts for the ranch and driving a four-horse team. He often drove the stagecoach over old San Marcos Pass to join Spanish Days La Fiesta and Rancho Visitadores rides in Santa Barbara. Skilled at his trade, Dad frequently handled the saddle horses for Mitchell ranch guests including celebrities such as Jimmy Stewart and Will Rogers.
Although offered employment as a Hollywood horse wrangler, Dad proudly traded his cowboy hat to serve in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. While stationed in Washington State, he received a commendation after spotting by radar a Japanese submarine off the coast.
It was during this assignment that Dad also spotted, met, and married a beautiful young woman named Argie Walker (Mama). After completing his enlistment and receiving an honorable discharge from the Army Air Corps, our parents moved with their first child, Patty, to Santa Ynez where Dad worked for several years on the Fleming Ranch. A true handyman, Dad could build or fix nearly anything. It was here that Dad and Mama had two more children, Bonnie and Bradley.
In the mid 1950's, our family relocated to Los Alamos, California. For the following 28 years, until retirement, Dad developed and owned the original Rancho Los Alamos Trailer Park. Although Dad and Mama divorced in the 1960's, they remained close friends until Mama passed away in 2007.
Dad was a tremendously kind, loving, and honest man. His many qualities and traits earned much love and respect from his family and countless friends. His strong work ethic and affinity for the outdoors was passed down to the generations he created.
In 1984, Dad was by honored by the Elks 1538 Mounted Recreational Color Guard for his many years of devoted service and support to the organization.
Beginning in 1992, Bonnie and her husband, John, were blessed to have Dad live with them in Nipomo for the following 26 years of his life.
In January 2019, Dad began his final months in Freda's Residential Care for the Elderly. We are grateful to Freda and her staff for the compassion with which they cared for Dad. We are grateful to our longtime family physician, Doctor Desmond, and his staff. Thank you so very much for your many years of care.
Although we immeasurably miss our Dad, we find comfort believing that he is once again enjoying his time on horseback with his beloved dog Annie by his side.
Dad is preceded in death by his parents, sister (Margie Truman), brother (Robert Asselstine), and daughter-in-law (Barbara Asselstine).
He is survived by his three children, Patty Taylor (Rick), Bonnie Olio (John), and Bradley Asselstine (Patti); Eight grandchildren, Thirteen great-grandchildren; and one great-great granddaughter. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
A celebration of Dad's life of life will be held at a later time.