This memorial page is dedicated to all who helped shape – and were influenced by – the great institution that is UC Santa Barbara.
For faculty, please visit Academic Senate Memoriam page.
Martin Arno '08 - October, 2022
Martin Arno '08 passed away suddenly on October 31, 2022 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Martin graduated from Modesto Junior College, the University of California Santa Barbara, and received an MA degree from University of Chicago. Martin was a scholar of religion in Mediterranean Antiquity. His dissertation, "Apostles Behaving Badly: Defending the Indefensible in Mediterranean Antiquity," traces how ancient writers sought to rehabilitate their traditions' founding heroes from accusations of damning moral failures.
Ida Rickborn '68 - September, 2022
Ida Rita Rickborn '68 has passed in the early morning of September 2, 2022. She fought a long and difficult battle with Parkinson’s disease. Through dedicated hard work she became a reading specialist, principal, assistant superintendent and superintendent of schools for the Goleta Union School District.
Frank Olmos '77 - August, 2022
passed away peacefully on August 1, 2022. He was born in Dinuba, CA on October 28, 1954 to Fidel and Dolores Olmos.
Gary Rasmussen '71 - August, 2022
Gary Glenn Rasmussen, BA '68, Ph.D. '71, Clinical Psychologist, passed away on Aug. 25, 2022, at the Glenridge Hospice Comfort Care unit in Augusta. He graduated from University of California, Santa Barbara with a bachelors’ degree in sociology. He has worked for the past 40 years as a clinical psychologist in Waterville. Gary worked for several years as the psychologist in the psychiatric unit at Seton Hospital in Waterville. Gary continued his private practice providing counseling services and was also a forensic psychologist.
Mary Lou Hale Smitheram '77 - August, 2022
passed away peacefully at home on August 6, 2022 after a few years of declining health. She was 93 years old. She accomplished a long-term goal of receiving a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Spanish Literature from the University of California Santa Barbara. This accomplishment is especially noteworthy as Lou was a full-time working mother while completing the doctorate program.
Dr. Thomas E. Berndt '68 - July, 2022
passed away in his sleep at the age of 78. He graduated college at the University of California Santa Barbara, did his medical training at the University of California Irvine, and became a specialist in family medicine at UC Davis Sacramento Medical Center.
Delores Elaine Bonander '46 - July, 2022
died July 4th, 2022 at the age of 96. She was the first in her Swedish family to attend college and was the epitome of a life-long learner and educator. A 1946 graduate of UCSB at the Riviera campus in home economics, she later earned her MS in Michigan state. She worked for UC extension for many years as well as being a donor and participant in community service. Delores enjoyed travel and supporting family and among other contributions, wrote for local papers and taught classes on local television and helped create a cookbook for friends of the Kingsburg, Ca. Library--Food from the Homelands-Celebrating the cultural diversity and agricultural richness of the San Joaquin Valley. Her connection to UCSB continues through a great niece, 1988 alumni (who shared same middle and last name) grand nephews in law, and now a Great Grand Nephew class of 2024.
John Halcón '82 - July, 2022
died surrounded by his family on July 20, 2022 in San Marcos, CA. He was known as "Dr. John" or "Professor Halcón" who never missed an opportunity to promote education, diversity, equity, and community service.
William Henry Cunningham '52 - June, 2022
former Board member and loyal “Riviera” alum has passed away on June 24, 2022 in Hilton Head S.C. Born Dec 2, 1930.
William Arthur Forsberg '07 - June, 2022
has passed away in Kealakekua, Hawaii, on June 12, 2022. He attended the University of California, Santa Barbara and graduated with a degree in environmental sciences.
Judy Hay Pochini '53 - June, 2022
Judy Hay Pochini died peacefully in her home in Santa Barbara on June 21, 2022, after a short illness. She was 90 years old. She graduated from Santa Barbara High School in 1949 and The University of California at Santa Barbara in 1953.
William Davison Kerrick '52 - June, 2022
has passed away on June 23, 2022. After military service he attended San Bernardino Valley College and Santa Barbara College of the University of California (now UC Santa Barbara), earning a bachelor's degree in Industrial Arts.
Thomas William McCloy '74 - June, 2022
of Woodland Hills, CA, passed away peacefully at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, on June 24, 2022. He received his Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1974.
Patricia D. Shoemaker '59 - June, 2022
has passed away at the age of 91.She met her husband, Dick, while attending the University of California, Santa Barbara. They married in 1951. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education with a minor in Fine Arts from Long Beach State College and a Master of Arts in Reading from United States International University.
Marilee Zazueta '60 - April, 2022
passed peacefully, April 4, 2022, with her children and husband at her side.
Rudy Aguilera '55 - January, 2022
passed away peacefully at home with Ann, his wife of 68 years, at his side. He was 88 years old.
Michael Warren '75 - January, 2022
launched the Positive Coaching Alliance program in Santa Barbara, where several coaches have gone through the training to learn how to motivate and hold the athletes accountable in a positive way.
Francis Cosmo Joseph Pizzulli '71 - December, 2021
completed his undergraduate work at UC Santa Barbara as a physics major with high honors and graduate work at the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law. He was awarded "Order of the Coif", Francis's work focused on research of bioethics issues and the impact of emerging technologies, genetics and cloning.
Virginia "Jinny" Cahill '67 - October, 2021
was an active member of the altar guild at the family's church, St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, and in 1978 joined the staff at St. Andrew's Priory School in Honolulu, where she became a much-loved college counselor for junior and senior students. She opened her boutique "Forever Christmas" in 1993. In its first year of existence, the store was awarded New Business of the Year by the Morro Bay Chamber of Commerce.
Elsie Whittaker '47 - October, 2021
who served for many years as the co-chair of the Riviera Reunion, died Oct. 20 in Southern California. She was a member of the sorority that eventually evolved into the Pi Phis. Her major was music and she served on the Associated Students board as its secretary. She was known as the heart and soul of the Riviera Reunion, the reunion of alumni that attended college on the Riviera campus.
Richard "Dick" Williams '59 - September, 2021
was a founding trustee of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation, a founding member of the Chancellor’s Council, a former president of the UC Santa Barbara Alumni Association, and was the only person to ever receive two Distinguished Alumni Awards in one year, one for business and one for service to the university in 1974. Mr. Williams also started the first alumni chapter outside of Santa Barbara, in Los Angeles, and was the first alumnus of UC Santa Barbara to represent the campus as an observer to the Board of Regents in 1974, a prelude to becoming a full member. On the board, he served as secretary of the Foundation and on the investment and finance committees. He also served as vice chair and board chair from 1998- 99.
Jennifer Leigh Blankenbeckler '98 - August, 2021
died on August 9, 2021, at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. She graduated from UCSB in 1998 with a degree in Communication. She worked in the Sansum Clinic at Ridley-Tree Cancer Center in Santa Barbara as a medical assistant in the Palliative Care Department.
Larry Clark DeSpain '63 - August, 2021
passed away on August 1, 2021, peacefully at his home in San Francisco with his family at his side following a nine-year battle with a tumor gastrointestinal stromatolites (GIST). Larry was predeceased by his parents Alma DeSpain and father Robert DeSpain, brother Allen DeSpain and his first wife Faye Hobbs DeSpain. Larry attended UC Santa Barbara, graduating with a BA in History. He was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity and served a term as chapter secretary. In 1974 he was transferred to San Francisco and it was here in the Bay Area he met his wife Phyllis. Larry was the chairperson of his 50th class reunion at UC Santa Barbara a reunion made notable by the class gift that was the first endowed scholarship of any graduating class. He is survived by his wife of the past 39 years Phyllis McElwee DeSpain, sons Kevin and Kent (Dawnell), and grandsons Hudson and Maxwell, numerous cousins in Missouri and his longtime feline companion Duey.
Josephine Millett '52 - August, 2021
died Aug. 27 in Santa Barbara. Her career included teaching, social work and administrative support. She retired as a computer programmer at UCSB. She served on the executive board of the UCSB Retirees Association, was a member of the Golden Arrow of the Pi Beta Phi sorority, and a charter member of the California Zeta Chapter of the Pi Beta Phi. She won numerous awards for her flower arrangements.
Jim Clendenen '76 - May, 2021
was a winemaker and the owner of Au Bon Climat, a winery based in Santa Maria, California. Clendenen began his winemaking career working at Zaca Mesa Winery for three vintages. He was one of the most important vintners in Santa Barbara County history, an influential force on the international wine scene, and a legendary bon vivant known for crafting both world-class wines and long, epic lunches. He died in his sleep over the weekend. He was 68 years old.