Fallbrook resident Rev. Dr. Bradley “Brad” Paul Resare, who served as senior pastor at Fallbrook United Methodist Church for five years through June of this year, passed away unexpectedly July 13 while on a trip to Key Largo, Fla. to train for his instructor’s certification in scuba diving. Resare’s death was not due to a diving accident. He collapsed after completing an 800-yard swim in a pool and was unable to be revived.
“He had been training to do the swim; it had to be done within a time constraint,” said wife P.J. Resare. “He made the goal, then stood up in the shallow end of the pool, was talking and conscious, then suddenly collapsed into the water.”
P.J. said lifeguards and other emergency responders on hand at the facility tried to save her 57-year-old husband, but he never regained consciousness.
“He was a very experienced diver,” noted son Adam. “He tripled-checked everything, every time.” Resare was a member of the Temecula Valley Dive Club.
Born May 21, 1957 in Portland, Ore. to Robert Carl Resare Sr. and Doreen May Resare, Brad was the youngest of three boys. Since his family later relocated to San Jose, Calif., he went on to attend his first three years of high school there before they moved to West Linn, Ore., where he graduated from West Linn High School.
While living in San Jose as a high school student, Brad worked with his older brother, Rob, in a machine shop and programmed CNC machines. “His brother was very impressed with him and his skills at such a young age,” said P.J.
Brad continued his education at Portland State University where he earned a bachelor’s of science degree in biology.
He was married to Sandra Gayle Fowler from 1976 to 1988 and the couple had three children. He was involved in investing in, refurbishing, and reselling real estate.
Brad was thinking about going to medical school when he accepted an opportunity as a sales representative with the pharmaceutical firm Upjohn in 1982 and the family moved to Yakima, Wash. During his 18 years with Upjohn, he also moved to Anchorage, Alaska before returning to the Portland area.
At age 40, Brad began commuting to Salem, Ore. where he attended seminary for second career pastors. It was a two-year part-time program.
On Jan. 10, 1990, he married P.J. Andrew, whom he had met while working with junior chamber of commerce organizations.
Pursuing further education, Brad attained his masters of divinity in 2002 and doctorate of theology in 2005, both from the Claremont School of Theology. His area of emphasis was leadership and ethics.
“He was a very morally sound person,” said P.J.
Brad’s first assignment was as associate pastor for Simi Valley United Methodist Church in Simi Valley, Calif., where he served for three years. His first senior pastor position was at St. Matthews United Methodist Church in Newbury Park, Calif., where he served in the leadership role for four years. From there, Brad served as senior pastor at St. Andrews Methodist Church in Santa Maria, Calif. for two years.
His last post was as senior pastor for Fallbrook United Methodist Church and following that he had a variety of ideas he wanted to pursue.
“He had several entrepreneurial irons in the fire and wanted to become a scuba instructor; reinvent himself again,” P.J. said. “He was a passionate guy, we called him a Renaissance man because there were so many things he could do,”
Daughter Kristen Warfield said her father always excelled at what he did.
“He never did anything half way, he always did more; he couldn’t contain his passion,” she said. “Whether he was at the top of a mountain skiing, or at the bottom of the ocean diving, he got to see everything.”
Very involved in the communities he served in, Brad participated in many Fallbrook fundraisers including all walks to benefit the Fallbrook Food Pantry and as a volunteer at the Fallbrook Beautification Alliance’s annual July 4th event as well as mission trips to various locales. He also served many local groups in different capacities, as a member of Fallbrook Arts Alliance, board member Foundation for Senior Care, life member Friends of the Fallbrook Library and Fallbrook Historical Society, advisory board member Fallbrook Hospital, member Fallbrook Land Conservancy, member Rotary Club of Fallbrook, member Reche Community Club, founder of a chapter of Christians in Commerce in Fallbrook, and a member of Wednesday morning networking group at Denny’s.
“He gave the invocation at many public events and was very involved in community outreach and interdenominational efforts,” said PJ.
Brad held a pilot’s license, was a brown belt in karate, enjoyed sailing and snow skiing, and classic cars.
He is survived by his wife of 24 years, PJ of Fallbrook, Calif.; daughter Kristen (Christopher) Warfield and granddaughter Nora Haley Warfield, Seattle, Wash.; sons Adam Resare of Portland, Ore. and Benjamin (Blair) Resare and grandson Samuel Peter Resare of Beaverton, Ore.; parents Robert Carl Resare Sr. and Doreen May Resare of Tigard, Ore.; brothers Robert Carl Resare Jr. of Oregon City, Ore. and Michael Charles Resare of Tualatin, Ore.; and numerous nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, Sept. 6 at 10:30 a.m. at the Grand Tradition Estate & Gardens in Fallbrook (the weekend after Labor Day).
Donations in Brad’s memory made be made to the Foundation for Senior Care, the Fallbrook Food Pantry, Trauma Intervention Program (TIP), or the St. John’s Episcopal Church backpack program in Fallbrook.