Charles Spencer

December 4, 1929 – June 24, 2022.

Charles (Charlie) Earl Spencer passed away in the loving arms of his Savior on June 24, 2022.

He was the son of Shirley Ester Crow and Earl Mitchell Spencer. He was born on December 4, 1929 in Hot Springs Ark. After high school, he attended the University of Arkansas for one semester and Henderson State Teachers College, where he graduated in 1951 with a BS in Mathematics and a commission in the United States. Army. After marrying his first and only love, Rosemary (Mickey) Pittman in August 1951, he served at Fort Ord, Calif., Fort Benning, Georgia, and one year as an infantry platoon leader and S2 battalion in the 1st calvary division in japan. and Korea. His first daughter, Cassie, was born in 1953 while he was in Korea. He first met her seven months after returning from Korea.

Returning home in 1953, he attended the University of Arkansas, earning a BSEE and MSEE in electronics. While in college, his second daughter, Robin, was born, and he became active in the Army Reserve and as a research assistant developing mass spectrometers. In 1958 he was employed by Sandia National Laboratories, where he developed neutron generators for reactor surveys to detect clandestine nuclear material at customs and for high-voltage flash X-ray systems.

He was a co-developer of a lead-activated neutron detector that became a standard measuring device for neutron generators for artillery shells, cruise missiles, ground penetrators and ICBMs. He was among the first group of Sandians to be awarded the title of Emeritus Member of Technical Staff.

Along the way, he continued his service in the Army Reserve and retired as a colonel after nearly 30 years of service. He received the Legion of Merit and the Meritorious Service Medal.

Charlie, Mickey, and their daughters loved spending long camping vacations in the United States. They also spent many years having fun and water skiing and sunny weekends. Charlie and Mickey continued to travel after their daughters grew up and had the opportunity to visit the UK, France, Italy, Germany, Russia, Africa, Egypt, Australia, Israel, New Zealand and other countries including many Caribbean cruises and European cruise. with all the family. They toured most of the western states by motorhome, some of them with the Siglo de Oro RV Club. They enjoyed a busy life of square dancing, hiking, camping, bridge riding and a chariot trip down the Colorado River.

He was a loving and devoted husband and father. He took his family on fun, sometimes challenging adventures that bonded them even more by trust, teamwork and love. He was an incredible provider for his family and the epitome of “Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” He had a wonderful sense of humor that never left him until his dying day.

Charlie loved deeply and was devoted to four things in his life: Christ, his Savior; his family; his country; and his work at Sandia National Labs. In each of his loves, he excelled. He has said many times how much he loves his job and has always considered himself very lucky to be able to do what he loves every day. He also said, until the day he died, that if his country ever needed him, he would do what he could to help. He was a real patriot.

He is survived by his wife of nearly 71 years, Mickey Spencer; her daughters, Cassie Spencer of Denver, Colorado, Robin Lowell and her husband, Dr. Seth Lowell, of Rio Rancho, NM; step-grandson, Andrew Lowell, his wife, Amy and their children, Grace and Asher Lowell, all of Milton, Georgia; five nieces and two nephews; as well as many beloved friends, extended family and neighbors.

His parents predeceased him; her younger sister, Deloris Ann; her brother, Ronald Lee; his nephew, Lee Spencer; her stepmother, Frances Mary Pittman; his stepfather, Castel Lamar Pittman.

A funeral service was held at the National Cemetery in Santa Fe, NM on July 12, 2022.

A celebration of life will be held in his honor in early fall with details to follow.

Charlie will forever be in our hearts and will be deeply missed until we all meet again. Please visit our online guest book for Charlie at

FRENCH – Westside, 9300 Golf Course Road NW, 505-897-0300.

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