Obituary: Milovan Pompa
Father, baseball enthusiast, musician, ‘man of the people’
Claremont resident Milovan Pompa, 63, died July 23 at home with his loving family surrounding him. He had been in hospice care.
“Milo” was born on December 7, 1957, in Pomona, the son of Melque Pompa and Angelina Tarin Pompa. He grew up in Claremont playing baseball and music, and graduated from Claremont High School in 1976.
He moved to San Jose, California in 1981 to attend San Jose State University. There a drummer friend, Ralph, set up a meeting with Shiela Olson so that he could get a haircut. She gave him every haircut since that fated day.
After many years of being friends and life partners, he and Shiela finally got married on May 28, 2001, in a spiritually imbued Native American ceremony in the South Lake Tahoe forest.
They were blessed with two beautiful children, Sylvester and LeaAnn Pompa. He cherished his role as a parent and was always the coach out on the field with his kids and the others.
He had a passion for baseball, playing since he was about nine years old. As he got older, he came to be known as the big left-handed pitcher everyone called “chief.” He played baseball for the semi-professional Fontenettes team for years, ending his career with more than 400 strikeouts.
His other passion was music. He played the drums in high school before switching to bass. He played in bands all over California, in San Jose, Sacramento and Claremont, eventually becoming one of the most respected and sought-after bassists in the Pomona Valley.
“He was a larger than life kind of guy always trying to be positive and always standing up for the little guy,” his family shared. “He was a gentle giant who protected kids on the playground and always gave money to the homeless people.”
He retired after working for the city of Cupertino for more than a decade, where he pruned trees and maintained city streets. He then went on to become a web designer for San Jose City College, and for many seasons with Major League Baseball’s Oakland Athletics.
“Milo was a master locksmith and electronic sliding door and elevator technician,” his family added. “Milo later became a certified solar master mechanic. Milo was forever learning, growing, and eager to lend a hand. Milo was a man of the people and will be remembered by all for his beautiful bright smile and big hugs.”
He is survived by his wife Shiela; son Sylvester; daughter LeaAnn; mother Angelina and father Melque; sister Lisa; brother Eric; sister-in-law Lisa Kuly; nieces Carissa and Cyndi; nephews Jonathan Kuly and Evan; and great nieces.
His family offered this quote in remembrance:
“I gave you my love and you gave me so much happiness, but now it is time I must travel alone. Grieve for me if you must. Then let your grief be memories within your heart.”
A celebration of life is forthcoming.