Carl Hansen
1934 - 2020

Share Your Memories

From kissing King Bobo's ring to family reunions, road trips in antique cars, laying carpet, or one of Shirley's fabulous dinner parties, share your memories of Carl here so everyone can enjoy them.

Have a great photo? Email it to

Email a photo
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Memories of Carl

I didn’t know Carl very long but it was easy to see the impact he had on his family, from the respect they gave him to the work ethic he instilled in them. Whenever you had something needing to be done, you could always count on Carl to be the first to volunteer, you wouldn’t know it at the time, but you’d come back some time later to find that particular thing taken care of. Even the smallest comment about a tiny inconvenience was an opportunity for him to show you how much he loved his family. While he will be missed by many, the legacy he left behind for his family, and his quite extensive friend network, is something to be proud of. It was a privilege to see him love his wife no matter the circumstances, and to know that love carried on to his family as well, even those of us who joined later. Carl’s example will be a road map to us all as we continue on.

- Brian Mulholland

There are many ways to describe Grandpa and the man he was.  He would light up a room when he walked in it, but always made sure Grandma was the one in the spot light.  He would be the first one to jump to fix anything of yours that broke.  

Oh how he loved driving us grandkids all over the country, making sure we had numerous ice cream treats along the way (secretly using us as his excuse to Grandma even if he was the one that wanted it most!)

He and Grandma both instilled my love of older things, including old movies, old cars, and other antiques: but Grandpa was the one who’s face lit up when you told him you repurposed something old to use now, like the antique sewing machine in our living room that he and I converted into a desk.  

When I was ready to learn to drive, he insisted I learn manual before automatic – which as you can imagine was an adventure for us both!  He would let me fall for his sayings every time when I would say “Hi Grandpa, what are you up to?” And without skipping a beat he would respond “…oh still about 6’3!”  He taught me about marriage and what it looks like to continually pursue your spouse decade   after decade and be smitten by them and their presence to the very end.  And he taught me the importance of hard work – that no    matter where you came from or your education level you could be successful in anything you wanted to be.  

I promise you Grandpa, I will strive to continue your legacy – to love the Lord and raise up my family to do so as well, to love decorating the house for absolutely every holiday, to make friends anywhere I go and enjoy passing out gifts anytime I can, to teach my son the importance of hard work and to continue to cherish and appreciate the old.  It’s still hard to fathom you’re gone, but I know you are happy with Grandma again.  So it’s just a “see you later” for now, as we will see you both soon.

- Chrissy Mulholland

When I think of Grandpa, I think of his laughter. It was a special gift that was such a blessing to those around him. He could light up a room with his belly deep laughter. He could tell a joke in such a way that you couldn't help but chuckle even if it wasn't that funny! I can picture him and Grandma just beaming at each other with great big smiles. It was always funny to pose in a picture with him. Most people just say cheese, but Grandpa had to laugh in order to smile.  

Grandpa was my partner in crime and coupons. I worked with him these last few years and there weren't many dull moments. He would go to great lengths to make us smile. He would set up something  funny and then just sit and wait expectantly until I saw it. Then with a slow smile he would start laughing. His jokes were constant and he would share them with anyone much to our embarrassment sometimes. He was so full of life and made 86 look quite young. He loved people and had a busier social life and more friends than most! He was always up for an adventure and shared with us the love of travel.

Grandpa, thanks for the laughter, the smiles, the best hugs and the love you showed me. Thank you for showing me how to appreciate and love those around me; to work hard, have a generous spirit and have fun too. I love you Grandpa!

- Kylie Sloan

One of the many things I will remember about Grandpa is how he loved people. He loved with his whole heart and anyone lucky enough to feel that love can attest to its magnitude. Grandpa’s life was driven by humility and generosity, it was a life lesson that he taught to the grandkids through his many acts of service.

Grandpa loved to laugh and make other people laugh; his laugh will be a sound that will echo in my heart forever. Grandpa loved pictures, he had them all over his office and home, most of his family on the many memorable trips we took. The pictures will always be a reminder of the memories, but nothing can truly capture all the laughter and love we all shared.

I can remember many trips in their motorhome with all 6 of us in a very small space. I am sure there were moments where the motorhome seemed far too small for us all, but the funny thing is, all I remember is the feeling of not wanting to be anywhere else.

Grandpa taught me so much about life; he would always say make sure you invest in God, people and real estate. I am going to miss his many life lessons and words of wisdom but mostly I am going to miss seeing his love for life and family.

I am not sure you are ever ready to say goodbye, Grandpa had so much life left to live, trips to take and family milestones to enjoy but the one piece of comfort I find in all of this heartbreak is that his heart can once again be whole, because he is back with Grandma.

- Jen Broom

I never knew you inherited grandparents when you married into families but I really hit the jackpot with Grandma and Grandpa. If Grandma was the driving force of the family, then Grandpa was the beating heart. From the first day, his booming laugh, back slaps, and sparkling eyes made me feel right at home.

He always joked that he was a "Dumb Swede" (doubly a joke because he was so proudly Danish), but he had a gentle and quiet way of teaching us about things that mattered. How good it feels to work on something for your family, to build something for the Lord. How sweet it is to love and appreciate other people, especially the people you see everyday at your favorite restaurants, delivering mail, or more.

He was a good businessman but he invested time where it really   mattered -- in people. He and Grandma have a powerful legacy and their lives have touched so many people. I am grateful to be one of them. We love them fiercely and will miss them deeply -- no doubt they are planning a car tour or epic Christmas party in heaven now! We love you, Grandma and Grandpa!

- Marieke Desmond

Grandpa was a big guy with a bigger heart. He never met a stranger. He assumed the best of people and loved making new friends. He was always looking for an opportunity to bring a smile to your face, as it would "improve your face value". He loved to make people laugh, give a gift to brighten someone's day, or show off how he could still crawl around on his knees at 86 years old. But most of all, he lived to serve his girls and spoil his grandchildren... and he was good at both. The world feels emptier without him in it. But I know he and Grandma are now with Jesus, rejoicing together and cheering us on. Love you Grandpa!

- Brent Desmond

When I married into the family I truly married into the family !! There was not a time when I did not feel loved and always included as part of the Hansen family.

When I think of Carl I think of his big laugh, huge smile, and hugs. But of course when i think of Carl, Shirley is right there in my mind. Inseparable and both standing out as a true gift from God. My solid memories were of the family reunions at Lake Nacimiento and then the fun times at the Shoppe. Always opening up their hearts for their families and friends.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the girls and all of their families. Such a strong bond they have and superior faith which will help them get through these hard times. We are here for you!

- Rondi, Kevin, Kristi, Staci and families.

My memory of Carl will include how he stood in the FBC Narthex usually situated next to the right sanctuary door with Don Desmond with watchful eyes of all those who moved around in and through the narthex. He always had a smile for people. He truly loved and cared for people.

He and Shirley exemplified Godly marriage and service with humility and quietness. They took Kevin and me out to dinner to congratulate our marriage. They picked us up, treated us to dinner, served a slice of cake on a special plate with his and hers fork.

I also remember their support for the pastor search committee before, during, and after the pastor search. He opened their home during the Christmas time for fellowship, dessert (Marian ice cream) with the antique ice cream scoops. His Christmas decorations were absolutely beautiful and amazing.

He was generous with his time, caring, and helping hands. He and Shirley truly made a difference in my life. They were faithful servants of God. I am truly honored to have known them!

- Susie Pace

We have known the Hansen family since the early sixties. At that time Carl called us regarding our 1910 EMF Roadster as he was interested in finding a vintage auto and wanted to take a look at our car. Carl was president of the national club and along with Shirley, family, club members and other good people worked together to put on a fabulous Steinbeck tour.

We send our sincere thoughts and prayers to his family & know he will be missed by so many.

- Bill & Lee Gularte, Soledad

He and Shirley were my best of friends. They were both lovely people. I will miss them greatly. Carl was on the advisory board of Pacific Valley Bank a few years back. His wisdom and help was tremendous. Salinas will miss them greatly especially their Christmas lunches. Carl was one of the finest human beings that I have known.

- Peter Shah

I had the pleasure of meeting Carl when I came to work at Northern Salinas Valley Mosquito Abatement District in 2017 and although it has only been 4 short years, I felt like I'd known him for a lifetime.  He was one of the warmest, most sincere people I've ever come across in life.  We had many wonderful visits when he would stop by the office and, because I love a good love story, I got to hear all about how Shirley and he became the loving couple they were.  We often spoke of Salinas and it's history and I really admired his business sense and his compassion for all people.  To say that my fellow employees and I will miss him is an understatement as there will never be another Carl Hansen.  He was one of a kind and I'm grateful to have known him. RIP Carl.

- Mona Sloan

I can't even begin to share all of the wonderful memories of the past 54 years that my husband and I have known Carl and Shirley.  He was such a kind and caring man.  This past year whenever he saw my car at the dance studio in the evening he would always stop and check on me to make sure that I was alright.  We had many wonderful chats.  Sometimes I would be teaching an online class and couldn't come out to the car so he would pull up to where he could see in the window and we would smile and wave at each other.  It was nice to know that someone cared enough to check on me.  When I told him that we were going to start teaching outside in front of the Studio, he thought about all the leaves that I would have to sweep each day and showed up with a leaf blower for me.  I told him that I would return it when I was done with it and he said that he was going to buy another one and to just keep it.  That leaf blower is now one of my treasured possessions because my friend Carl have it to me.  It represents his thoughtfulness, kindness, and generosity.  Being at the Studio alone at night will be a lot lonelier because my friend Carl is not here to check on me.  

We are all devastated at losing him, however we can take comfort knowing that he is right where he wants to be, in heaven holding hands with Shirley, the love of his life.

- Jeanne Robinson

Carl and Shirley entered my life when we remodeled the Baptist church and added architectural elements for the Streets of Bethlehem. I have so many fond memories of their selfless devotion to the project, their constant inspiration and guidance. If I ever met anyone more dedicated to the love of the spirit of Jesus Christ and His teachings it would surprise me. My reservations of Baptists were completely exposed as groundless and their acceptance of my Catholic leanings so humorously and lovingly explored formed a bond I’ll always cherish. Carl was a rock. Maybe he should have been named Peter. The Rock.

I admire him and feel so honored to have known him.

- Richard Rhodes, Architect

I haven't had the nerve to view this site.  Yes, I know Uncle Carl has passed, but somehow, I don't want to accept it and won't until I drive to Salinas, see my cousins and acknowledge that Carl isn't there, teasing, hugging, and laughing.  What a loss!   And Aunt Shirley too!  How can this be?  All I can conclude is that they were such an incredible "do everything together" couple, that they had some pre-destined exit plan?  I really thought we had many years left to share and enjoy Carl.  Super bummer.  He was my dad's youngest sibling and apparently he idolized my dad.  When my dad left for World War 2, Carl supposedly stopped eating.  Wow!  Carl has always made me and my 3 sisters feel special, as I know he has for all of the other other nieces and nephews.  We had lunch together at Phil's in Moss Landing a month before he passed.  He was vibrant, inquisitive, and so alive. We talked about Shirley's birthday on 11/14 (which is mine too) and he expressed that it was hard without her.   I just can't believe he was so healthy and then passed.  So I want to express my love and appreciation for him and Shirley, along with my cousins and families.  We are all getting older.  Things change.  Loved ones pass.  I'm appreciating Carl and Shirley both, for the fantastic uncle and aunt that they were to me and my family.  Their love of family, community, and  church has been inspirational to us all.  I love you Carl and will miss you!

- Lori Hoover

I was 37 years old when I first met Carl and his beloved wife Shirley.  A young pastor's wife with two young children. He was rock steady in who he was. Carl was such a fine husband, father, and grandfather. He always had a kind word for others. In recent years when we would run into each other, I was always greeted with a bear hug and him asking me how I was doing? He always had time to give kindness and encouragement. He lived his faith and will be missed by many, many people who were blessed to know him. Well done Carl! Yours was a life well lived showing God's love to others.

- Mary Feske

Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss... Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.

- Dan and Linda Yop

Just a great guy. Honest, forthright and noble. Met with him and the morning coffee group for years. Good story telling times. Another 'Super Guy' gone. Condolences to the family...

- Bud Cook

This is my Uncle Carl.

He was an honorable man that valued hard work, community, and a solid investment. But above that, he valued God and family.

He and my Auntie valued the same things. I think that's why they were inseparable from high school on. Until this past February, when they were separated by death.

This was a common picture of them in one of their favorite places, Solvang, a trip they took regularly and a picture that often ended up on their Christmas card. They traveled everywhere together, did everything together, managed business together. Theirs was a rare kind of relationship, one we all should aspire to. It's been a difficult year, being separated from his one love.

This week, I know my Uncle Carl was ushered into heaven by my Aunt's angelic organ music. They wouldn't have had it any other way.

They have both left a gaping hole in their world, but have left a treasured legacy for their family.

We'll miss you both, Auntie and Uncle Carl. Goodbye for now, but not forever.

Thinking of all my cousins, grieving the loss of this great man. My heart is breaking with you.

Love, from SD

- Sabrina Dickson

How do I write about someone I have known and loved since I was 6 years old? Carl Julius Hansen married my sister Shirley Elaine Wharton when I was 7 years old. My cousin Carol and I were Junior Bridesmaids. After their honeymoon, they came back to live in the room off the garage at our house on Kimmel Street. And so on the story goes.....for the next 70 years our lives constantly intertwined. After my sister died February 16, ten days before Carl turned 86, I called him from time to time throughout Covid and we had several long conversations about those “good ole days.”

You have to understand, Carl was the son every parent dreams will marry their daughter. He was the partner in business with my Dad. If the church needed something fixed, he was there in a flash! If my Mom needed something, he was there. Words that best describe him were: “Dependable” “Generous”

Shirley and Carl did everything together and I mean EVERYTHING. They were in business together. They did church together. They bought real estate together (C&S Properties). Shirley played the organ, Carl installed the pipe organ. They headed the youth group together. They played jokes on people together. They went on antique car trips together. They put on Streets of Bethlehem together.

One of the sweetest memories I have is watching them leave church in their latter years, hand in hand.

Then the Fall hit, first anniversary of Shirley’s birthday, November 14, then Thanksgiving, then Christmas. Because of Covid, our family could not be together. Because of Covid, his daughters could not be by his side at the hospital. Because of Covid, he spent his last week of life away from everyone he loved. Because of Covid, he spent Christmas alone in a hospital bed. The man who was always working, always on the go, always helping others, was confined.

To lose them both in the same year is HARD. But then again it was always “Carl and Shirley” or “Shirley and Carl” now in death as well as life. They left a big mark on this earth which will remain ALWAYS (which was the song sung at their wedding)... “I’ll be loving you always” and they did and still will be loving each other always in heaven.

This is NOT good-bye but “See you soon”

- Marilyn (Broome) Bennett
Carl's sister-in-law

Our family has known your family for decades and we have so many wonderful memories. Your parents hold a dear place in our hearts, as do all of you. We will miss seeing your Dad at Pacific Valley Bank and Star Market, and will especially miss his wonderful smile and laugh. He was always so generous and kind, and had the best sense of humor. Our hearts are so heavy for all of you, but we know Carl and Shirley are hand in hand watching over you.

- The Hunsdorfer Family

Carl and Shirley were special friends. We have traveled many RV and antique car trips with them. We have wonderful memories. Carl was quite a jokester. When he came to visit us, he pounded on the front door and laid on the doorbell, so we always knew it was Carl. He laid on our patio floor on one Thanksgiving day while we were gone. Carl was full of mischief but would do anything for you. We will miss our wonderful friends. Carl and Shirley are having a wonderful time and he is holding Shirley's hand again. God Bless the Broom Family and Desmond Family.

- Bill and Betty Turner

To the entire Hansen family... Beautiful obituary... Just a glimpse into the wonderful lives Carl and Shirley led. Carl was one of the finest, honest, most loyal friends anyone could have... I was part of the Saturday car-guys breakfast for 35 years. Can't believe he's gone. God Bless You.

- Norm Yop

Cindy, Sandy and family~ Our sincerest thoughts and prayers are with all of you. Please know that If you need anything at all we are here for you. How your Mother and Father died is just a Memory~ How they both loved and lived their life is well with remembering.

- Kelly and Sue Richlin

I was so sorry to hear about Carl. I was working for the mosquito district for most of his board member years. He let me and my wife take one of his beautiful cars to cherries jubilee one year. What a memorable occasion for us. Prayers for you all.

- Dan and Gloria Gomes. Retired. N.S.V.M.A.D.

A tree represents A Tree of Life. You represented such true beauty of generosity and support. God IS the root, your a vine, we a branch to continue on.

- Lorraine Aguirre

Sending you All our Love and Prayers at the passing of Mr. Carl. God Bless.                                     

- Dan and Becky Gahr

Reunions!!! So many different locations: Lake Shasta and the sweet Shoppe upstairs above the Toy Shop. Once, visiting the girls at the Gift Peddler, Uncle Carl shoved a $50 bill into my hand, telling me to "find something for yourself." Both he and Aunt Shirley were way-beyond everyone and at all times. His contagious laugh as he just pulled a trick on someone, was never very far away.  He and Shirley were blessed with love and laughter. Then...they shared it with everyone they met. Jesus was the center of it all, until they both left us. What a couple. What a man.

- Kathie Hansen

Carl Hansen was one of the kindest men I have ever known. I'll never forget his big belly laugh, his strong hand shakes, and the way he'd tease you with a knowing grin and sparkling eyes. He was never happy unless he was working. And he was happiest when he was working for Grandma. He was her biggest cheerleader and I still listen to hear her call him, "Carl!" to hold her hand, remind her of something, or just be near each other. Grandpa was always willing to do someone else a favor, to help someone else succeed, and he got as big a kick out of others' achievements -- "Boy, I better get a new shirt, I busted all the buttons off this one, I'm so proud." He was larger than life in a lot of ways and even up til the end, he was curious and ready to learn more about newfangled devices or something in the news. I'm proud to have known him and will cherish my memories of him and Grandma forever.

- Marieke Desmond