Clarence E. Gardner (Butch)
Butch was born in 1946 in Harrisburg Pa. but grew up in Rialto, Ca. He attended San Bernardino Valley College and the University of Ca. at Pomona.
Following his move to Sacramento he married Sharon, his wife of 45 years. They had a son Edward in 1968. Butch is also survived by his brother-in-law William Hurley.
Butch retired after 32 years at McClellan AFB as Instrument and Electro Optics Night Vision Repair Division Chief. During that time he received multiple Manager of the year and Civilian All Star Awards as well as the USAF Civilian Meritorious Service Award. He was also a Certified Industrial Engineer.
After retirement he served as a consultant for GEC Marconi Electronics, Army Missile Command and the County of Sacramento.
Other than family, the love of his life centered around the classic/hot rod car hobby. Since his first car, a 56 Ford Ranch Wagon, at age 17 – he was hooked. He started his own business, Artesia Street Rod Promotions, and was active in facilitation automotive events. He owned and promoted his own car show in Placerville for 15 years. He has been building and showing hot rods and customs since 1963 with four being featured in national magazines.
Butch was the host of the Hot August Nights "Cruise of Champions" for many years. More recently was the Swap Meet Manager under the ownership of Bob and Vivian Davies.
He began a long association with the Sacramento Autorama when he started showing his cars in 1973 and went on to become a professional show judge. In 1999 he became Show Director and Floor Manager for the Autorama and the Grand National Roadster Show under Dan Cyr Ent. He was proud to become a member of the Autorama Legends Society and served as Society Chairmen hosting the event for several years. He was very happy to return to the Autorama in 2012 as the venue manager for the "Clubhouse" under John Buck Ent. He was really looking forward to participating in 2013.
Butch was extremely proud to be a Life Member in the Capitol Auto Club Thunderbolts. He joined the club in 1974 and it has been like a second family ever since. He was President seven times and earned several awards. He was very happy when his son joined in 2005.
He was currently on the Board of Directors for the Assoc. of Ca, Car Clubs, working to protect the car hobby through open communication with our elected officials. He was looking forward to several events in the coming year.
Butch has been the host of the "Cruisin Garage" radio show on AM 950 KAHI since 2001. He also keeps busy as a Specialty Vehicle Appraiser. Over the years he has been an automotive columnist for the Sacto Bee and the Placerville Mountain Democrat.
It has been said that there is a large hot rod club in the sky.
Well, they just got a strong member. Krooze Safe.
A funeral service will be held on Monday December 10, 2012 at 2pm at Mount Vernon Memorial Park 8201 Greenback Lane Fair Oaks, Ca 95628