Obituary for Spencer Manlove, Sr.
Spencer Leslie Manlove claimed the victory in Christ on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. He was born in Englewood, Colorado, on May 26, 1928. He was the only child of Leslie and Zoe Manlove.
Spencer had a wonderful childhood growing up in Pueblo, Colorado. His first car was a Model A. One of his favorite stories was describing his mother pushing the car down the alley so he could get it started.
Spencer graduated from Central High School in Pueblo in 1946. After high school, he attended college at the University of Colorado in Boulder. He worked for an eyeglass company where his job was to wash the glasses and grind the rims. He didn’t want to make a career out of it, so he became more serious about school. He started out as a pre-med student but switched to Colorado College where he was required to take a calculus course. The professor so inspired him, he got an advance degree in math and built his career around math.
Spencer married Patricia Ann Clammer on Dec. 25, 1950. Soon after, President Truman called up the Reserves for duty relating to the Korean War. After boot camp, he returned home to Pueblo just in time to see the birth of his first son, Spencer Stephen. Spencer served in the U.S. Navy on the USS Prairie during the Korean War. After being discharged in 1952, Spencer and Patty settled in California where he finished his education at San Jose State College. His first job was at Lawrence Livermore Research Laboratory, which was aggressively hiring math majors at that time. He worked on two large computers: an IBM 701 and a Remington Rand Univac I. The primary mission of the Research Laboratory at that time was the design of nuclear weapons. The basic process in the design of nuclear devices was to start by constructing a mathematical model of the device. Because there was a cutback in weapons testing, the “mathematical modeling” approach to design became extremely important. Since computers were so new, no one really had any knowledge of how to program them, so work in this field was very exciting. He had the privilege to work with Edward Teller, a world renowned physicist and Harold Brown, who later became Secretary of Defense under President Carter.
During their time in Livermore, Spencer and Patty were blessed with three more children: Helen, George and Robert. In 1963, he moved the family to Southern California and began work as a mid-level manager of a programming group. Looking for a change, in 1967 Spencer accepted a position at the University of Montana as an associate professor. He played an integral part in creating the Computer Science Department at the University. There were only a handful of such departments throughout the country and no available textbooks, so developing an undergraduate curriculum was a challenging task. He was granted tenure and promoted to Professor. He retired in 1989 after 22 years of teaching.
Spencer and Patty thoroughly enjoyed their retirement years. They traveled throughout the world; on their own and with the Friendship Force. They especially enjoyed taking trips to Europe with granddaughters Sarah and Courtney. They had an active life playing bridge, attending the symphony, as well as entertaining the grandchildren.
Patty passed away in 2002 and Spencer settled into life as a widower. Two years later, he met and married Rhea Blanchard. Spencer and Rhea had a wonderful 14 year marriage and he said his marriage to Rhea made his final years very happy ones.
Spencer was preceded in death by his first wife, Patty, and his second wife, Rhea. He is survived by his children: Spencer Stephen, Helen (Mark) Christensen, George (Jill), and Robert; his grandchildren: Paul (Samantha) Christensen, Sarah (Jake) Mensing, Courtney Manlove, Whitney (Tim) Bachman, Nicky, Alex and Breail Manlove; great-grandchildren: Gavin, Asher, and Luca Christensen.
A funeral service for Spencer will be held on Thursday, Jan. 18, at Messiah Lutheran Church, 3718 Rattlesnake Drive, Missoula at 1 p.m. Following the service, there will be a reception in the church fellowship hall.
Suggested memorials are to First Lutheran Classical School, 2808 South Ave. West, Missoula, MT 59804 or The University of Montana Foundation — Computer Science Department, P.O. Box 7159, Missoula, MT 59807-7159.
Spencer Stephen Education Military School Patricia Ann Clammer University Robert Missoula Spencer Leslie Manlove Rhea George