Rex Ford Amburgey was born in a tiny cabin in Bath, Kentucky on June 16, 1934 to Polly (Bentley) Amburgey and Oran Amburgey. He was the oldest son of three boys. Rex left Kentucky in his late teens searching for a better life. He moved to Eatonville, WA to be with extended family. Shortly after arriving in Eatonville, he met Shirley Haarstad. They were married in 1954, later to be blessed with three children; Denise (Chad) Chevalier, Curt Amburgey and Brenda (Jeff) Klemann. The family of 5 moved to Enumclaw, WA in 1966 and he started his successful career in auto sales. Shirley and Rex’s loving marriage of 58 years focused on God, family, friends, travel and much joy living between their homes in Palm Desert, CA and Enumclaw, WA. Shirley passed away from cancer in 2012. He found a beloved companion with Patti Holmvig, they spent time together in both California and WA.
He was a talented musician; playing guitar by ear and singing vocals, which led to many wonderful opportunities leading several bands and various recording deals and just playing whenever he found an opportunity.
Rex was a superb golfer and enjoyed giving lessons and heading up the construction of the Enumclaw Men’s Club building project as president. He was an active part of Enumclaw Rotary serving as president also. Later he worked for the Washington State PGA organizing and running golf tournaments with Shirley by his side. Rex used his passion for golf spending countless hours at American Lake teaching golf to wounded warriors.
He also served as Elder at Wabash Church in Auburn, WA for many years and led a local non-denominational Prayer Breakfast in Enumclaw. He had a deep passion for leading people to the Lord. He found a love for photography, which led to he and Shirley starting S&R Studios shooting weddings and portrait photos in their home studio. He kept an immaculate yard and always had a real putting green (or two) in his back yards.
He is survived by his brother Tom (Judy) Amburgey, sister-in-law Aida Amburgey, sister-in- law Donna (Bob) Berumen, his 3 children and 2 son-in-laws, 9 grandchildren; Brandon (Tena) Chevalier, Louie Chevalier, Kayla (Zach) Grosvenor, Ryan (Kacey) Klemann, Hannah Kilcup, Lacy Klemann, Kacee (Cody) Hemphill, Kamy Klemann, Cody (Allie) Klemann and 15 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Rex was proceeded in death by his parents Oran and Polly, wife Shirley and brother Wendall Amburgey. A private family burial is planned. Please join the family for an Open House gathering in Rex’s Honor, Wednesday, December 22, 2021 at Guest House Inn Hotel located at 1000 Griffin Avenue, Enumclaw, WA from noon – 3:00.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to his church MRCC, 1878 Osceola St. N, Enumclaw, WA. 98022 or Wounded Warrior Project.
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