July 21, 1927-Oct. 5, 2022
With deep sadness, we announce the passing of Clarence Henry “Chris” Spilker on October 5, 2022, at the age of 95, from an incident of illness at age. He was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. His family emigrated from Germany to the United States shortly after the end of World War I.
He was born on July 21, 1927 in Salt Lake City. He was the only surviving brother born in the United States. His last name was changed to Spilker when his family applied for citizenship and discovered that a great-grandfather had changed Spilker’s last name to Hollinderbaumer because “Spilker” was too common in that area of Germany. They changed the last name to Spilker because it was easier for their American neighbors.
After completing his freshman year at Granite High School, Chris joined the Merchant Navy (where they insisted on changing the spelling of his last name to “Spelker” to sound less German) and served on a Victory Ship in the Pacific Theater until the end of World War II. After returning from military service, he married his high school sweetheart, Joyce Daybell, on June 24, 1947, and they were inseparable for over 74 years until Joyce passed away on January 26, 2022.
With his beloved wife, he served missions in Ghana (Accra), New York (Rochester), and twice in Martin’s Cove, Wyoming. He was a servant of the temple for a long time until his health no longer allowed him to do so. He has served on the high council, counselor in the bishopric, and in many other leadership and service positions in the church. He was a prominent home builder in the St. George area and built many fine homes throughout Washington County. His building skills were also useful in Ghana where he was responsible for the construction of many church buildings and the maintenance/repair of buildings.
Chris is the father of six children: Marsha (Roger) Christensen, Clark (Janet) Spilker, Kevin Spilker (deceased), Janna (John) Hall, Chuck (Connie) Spilker and Mike (Ann) Spilker. He has 22 grandchildren and 48 great-grandchildren whom he loved and who loved him very much. He was predeceased by his parents, William Henry and Johanna Spilker; his sisters: Herta, Erna, Hilda and Elfreida; his wife, Joyce Daybell Spilker; his son, Kevin Spilker; grandson, Cody Spilker; and great-grandson, Caemen Spilker.
Chris was able to spend his final days at home thanks to the tireless efforts of loving caregivers. The family would like to give special thanks to Stacy Hales, Patsy Heaps, Covin Jacobson and Jacque Lyman for the care that allowed him to continue living at home during his final days.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, October 15 at 11 a.m. in Metcalf’s Mortuary Chapel, 288 West St. George Blvd., St. George, Utah. A visit will take place on Saturday, before the offices, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at the morgue. Interment will be in St. George City Cemetery located at 600 East Tabernacle St.
Arrangements are in the custody of Metcalf Mortuary, (435) 673-4221. Visit the Metcalf Mortuary website for condolences, full obituaries and funeral announcements.