James Ambus

December 8, 1923November 6, 2010

James Ambus “Papou Dimitri” Gone fishing…

Our beloved father, papou, uncle and friend fell asleep in the Lord on Saturday November 6, 2010 after a gallant fight with Dementia.

James was born December 8, 1923, in Davenport, California to Greek immigrants John and Clara Ambathiotakis of Hania, Crete. Jim graduated from Superior High School, Wyoming and later moved back to San Francisco to enlist in the Army during World War II, where he became a Corporal in the Army Air Corps as a radio operator. After the war he returned to San Francisco, where he attended Heald Engineering College as a radio and television technician and graduated in June 1956. He also met and later married Camelia Christopulos, in San Francisco on December 12, 1960. They moved back to Salt Lake City and were married for 20 years and had three children.

In the 1970’s he opened his own business, “City Welding & Radiator” where he worked until he retired at age 72. He was a member of the Greek Orthodox Church and of the Cretan Juniors. Jim was a cowboy at heart and loved hunting, fishing, animals and horseback riding (a true outdoors man). He enjoyed all sports, and was a huge 49ers fan. Jim loved music and enjoyed playing his harmonica, organ, and piano. Dad had rhythm, and loved to dance, especially with his grandchildren. Jim was jovial, had a good sense of humor, made friends easily and had a zest for life. Jim was most proud of his family and especially his grandchildren. They had a special love for each other and they will cherish that relationship forever.

Preceded in death by his parents and brothers, Mike, Gus, and Pete Ambus. Survived by, son Gregory T. Ambus of Long Island, NY/grandchildren Greg and Alicia, daughters Denise (Nick) Nikols/grandchildren Mary and John, Victoria (Kosta) Luras/grandchildren Alexander, Patricia, Vickie and Aleko, his sister Helen Mazoras of Hayward, CA, and an extended family of nieces, nephews and grandchildren (Jessica & Cody) and great grandchildren who loved him dearly.

Friends and family may pay their respects at Wasatch lawn Mortuary 3401 Highland Drive on Sunday, November 14, from 6-8 p.m. With a Trisagion Prayer Service at 7:00 p.m. Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. at Holy Trinity Cathedral 279 S. 300 W. on Monday November 15, 2010. Interment at Mount Olivet Cemetery. In lieu of flowers send donations to Primary Children’s Hospital.

We would like to thank all the caregivers from Canyon Creek, VA Nursing Home and Care Source who gave their unconditional love to our father.

Dad, your “back in the saddle again”… not a day will go by that we will not miss your love, smile, laugh, music and dancing. Your memories will forever be in our mind and our hearts! s’okay, s’all right! We love you Jimacko! May your memory be eternal. Rest in peace.


  • Funeral Service Monday, November 15, 2010

James Ambus

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Patricia Luras

November 19, 2010

Dear Papou,
I have so many loving memories of you and I will always remember them. I will never ever forget how goofy you were and all the jokes and funny stories of your past you used to tell me. Or your laugh and smile that assured me everything was going to be ok. I enjoyed the long talks and lectures you would give me in my bedroom when I was crying because I would get yelled at by my mom and you were the one that would run in and see if I was ok.

You were my #1 fan and I was yours too and always will be. You were the only one that understood me. And even today, I don’t think anyone understands me or has been there for me as much as you did and were papou. I will miss us playing cards and you teaching me how to lick an ice-cream cone because I would always let the other half of the cone melt. I will miss when you would get up off the couch every few hours and pull your black comb out of your back pocket and fix your hair.

I loved when you would look at me and your blue eyes would twinkle like sapphires and when you would kiss me how your mustache would tickle my cheek. Your smile would always make my day and looks like a million dollars. I loved your sense of humor and how you would dance with me. You are my hero papou and I love you forever and always.

Love, your grandaughter,

Erick Nikols

November 18, 2010

We offer our deepest condolences to your family during these difficult times and understand the loss that you are experiencing.

Erick, Mary, Kassandra, Demetria and Athena Nikols

annemarie de ollos

November 15, 2010

victoria, i am so sorryabout the loss of you father. he must have been a very special man to have such a wonderful and caring daughter. my prayers are with you and the family, i would have been there today, butmy sister in law is also on her deathbed. may god give you all the strengh i love you annemarie de ollos

November 15, 2010

Victoria and Denise, My condolences to all your family. Life to you and your families. Just as your mother does, know that your father will now shine upon all of you from a better source, and that they were blessed to have you and your families as their children. May your father's memory be eternal.
Sophia Manousakis

Dave Nelson

November 14, 2010

Dear Denise,and your family:
Our condolences to you and your family from Dave Nslson and Eileen D. Nelson, remember that he is in a far better place than what we are and any pain that your dad was going through is no longer a factor and that he and your mom are now back together again . God bless you all with his comfort and peace.
Sincerely your friends always
The Nelsons

annemarie de ollos

November 14, 2010

dear victoria and family,my deepest sympathy for the loss of your wonderful father. victoria, you are in my prayers, your father must have been a very special man to have such a wonderful daughter like you victoria love annemarie de ollos

Tina Willmore

November 14, 2010

Vicki, so sorry to hear about your dad... I'm hoping to make it tomorrow to the funeral..

Lisa & Katie Wood

November 13, 2010

Dear Denise, Mary and the entire Ambus Family,
What a wonderful legacy you are to such an amazing man. Our prayers are with you. May God comfort you and bring you joy in the many happy memories of the times you shared.

November 13, 2010

Dear Greg,
Please accept my sincere condolences on the passing of your father.
Ron Zinner

Renee Luras

November 12, 2010

Dear Denise, Greg and the entire Ambus family, Our condolences. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

Mickey, Renee and Andrew Luras