Official Obituary of

Alan Hamilton Bowker

July 16, 1948 ~ March 8, 2024 (age 75) 75 Years Old

Alan Bowker Obituary

Alan H. Bowker, beloved husband, father and brother, died at home in San Anselmo on March 8, 2024 after a courageous struggle with cancer.    

Alan was passionate about travel photography, railroads, ham radio, computers, music, and above all, people.  He especially enjoyed spending time with daughter Kate Delaney and her husband Daniel Beard and their children Henry, Nick and Susannah  (Ann Arbor, MI). He never lost his optimism and joy in life.

Born in Washington D.C. in 1948 where he spent his early years, he frequently visited his maternal grandparents in Frostburg, Maryland.  It was in Frostburg that Alan learned to play the trombone with his grandfather, and began a life long love of music.  He was a season subscriber to the San Francisco Symphony for decades and took great pride in his 3 grandchildren all playing music.

When he was 10 his family moved to Casper Wyoming.  At 14,  Alan started a part time job as DJ at the local radio station.  He studied broadcasting at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, moving to the Bay Area to pursue a graduate degree in Broadcast Engineering at San Francisco State.  As a production engineer, Alan worked at KCBS on public affairs and entertainment features, which often included celebrities in the music and entertainment world.

While he enjoyed working in broadcasting, Alan took a keen interest in early personal computers and went on to work in Information Technology for Northstar Computers, Fantasy Records,  Dolby, The Good Guys, Homestake and KGO TV.  For a time he advised Stanley Kubrick on using personal computers for script preparation.

These jobs often required travel around the world, and fed his love of adventure.  He became a gifted travel photographer, focusing on the people he encountered in exotic locations.  Alan met his wife, Louise, on a train in India in 2015 where they were both touring.  They continued their adventures over the years crossing Russia on the TransSiberian Railroad, trips to Asia, New Zealand and Europe until the pandemic clipped their wings.  In spite of his illness, they managed to squeeze in a trip to Kenya and Tanzania, and to Egypt before travel became too difficult.

Alan obtained a ham radio license while in high school and it remained a keen interest all his life.  Most recently he earned the AMSAT (American Radio in Space) Grid Master Award, working all 488 grids in the country, a feat shared by only 62 other people.  He was an active member of the Marin Amateur Radio Society and continued to act as mentor to new operators.

He will be missed by so many friends, family and former colleagues, and especially by his wife and his cats.  A celebration of his life will be planned at a later date.

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