Jose “Joe” Franche Burgos passed away peacefully while surrounded by his family on March 6, 2021 – just one day shy of his 81st birthday, due to complications from pneumonia. Joe was born on March 7, 1940 in Irosin Town Province of Sorsogon, Philippines, to his parents, the late Artemio and Felisa Burgos.
Growing up in the Philippines, Joe was close with his five siblings and had many hobbies including playing basketball and volleyball. At the age of 20, an opportunity of a lifetime presented itself. In 1960, Joe enlisted in the United States Navy at U.S. Naval Station, Sangley Point, Cavite, Philippines. Shortly thereafter, he arrived in America to complete recruit training (boot camp) at the U.S. Naval Training Center in San Diego, CA. He began his career in the Navy as a cook and his first ship, the USS Coral Sea (CVA 43), was stationed at the Naval Air Station in Alameda, CA. Joe was grateful for the opportunity to serve so that he could build a bright future for himself, and help support his family back home in the Philippines.
Joe spent time aboard a number of ships during his career including the USS Kearsarge (CVS-33), USS Bonhomme Richard (CVA-31), USS Ranger (CVA-61), USS Albany (CG-10), and USS Enterprise (CVAN-65). Joe enjoyed travelling the world, and made many life-long friends with his shipmates. He devoted 27 years to serving in the US Navy, and retired as a Chief Petty Officer in 1987.
Following his service, Joe worked for the Department of Defense at the Naval Air Station Alameda until it’s closure. He then went on to work at San Quentin State Prison, running its hobby shop for 10 years until officially retiring in 2005.
In 1970, he married the love of his life, Rebecca “Vicky” Sinlao of San Carlos City, Pangasinan Philippines. They were introduced by Joe’s aunt, who was the owner of Vicky’s dormitory in college. Together they raised a family and created a wonderful life together. They settled in Alameda, CA in 1981 and have called the island home for 40 years. Upon retirement, Joe and Vicky enjoyed travelling the world together, often embarking on many international cruises. In addition, they loved to cook together, attend Warriors basketball games, and babysit their grandchildren. They recently celebrated 50 years of marriage in October 2020.
Joe loved going to the gym, playing basketball, gardening, sudoku, singing in the kitchen, and cooking for his family, especially during the holidays. His greatest thrill was being a fun-loving grandfather to his four grandsons and making them giggle and laugh whenever he could.
Joe was an active member of his community. He became a Mason and was a member of the Sublime Benicia Lodge for over 15 years. He once served as Grand Master to his lodge, and received the Hiram Award in 1995.
Joe is preceded in death by his parents, Artemio and Felisa, and his siblings Artemio Jr., Constante “Tino”, and Evelyn. Joe will be deeply missed by his loving wife of 50+ years, Rebecca “Vicky” Burgos and their children: daughter Kimberly Schofield (Dayton Schofield); son Jason Burgos (Annie Burgos); daughter Jennifer Zak (William Zak) and grandsons Duke and Cole Zak; and daughter Jovy Pivnick (Daniel Pivnick) and grandsons Walter and Weston Pivnick, as well his surviving siblings, Erlinda and Nora and many nieces and nephews.
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