Helen Wallace Riley
1913 - 2010, Santa Barbara
Helen Wallace Riley (Maria Elena Wallace de Riley) A 41 year resident of Santa Barbara County, died at home on May 6, 2010. An adventurous soul from the very beginning, Helen was born in in Guatemala City to Elisa Andrino Wallace and William Edmund Wallace, Nov. 5, 1913. She was the youngest of four siblings.
Helen is preceded in death by two brothers, and is survived by her eldest brother, William Wallace, of Concord CA. After traveling from Central America to Los Angeles for the 1932 Olympics, she later moved to Chicago, then San Francisco, seeking her lifepath. In 1936 she married Oscar Joseph Riley, they raised their children, Richard Percy and Aida Elizabeth, in the San Gabriel Valley. Her husband died in 1964. In 1968, Helen moved to Santa Barbara County where she was active in many local groups including Direct Relief International, The Foresters, RSVP, Foodbank, and Aliso School.
For many years, she did handwork of crocheted and knitted treasures for philanthropic distributions, at SBCH, Retirement Homes, and other care centers. A lifetime of creativity, generosity and kindness was her voluntary gift. She is survived by her children, 5 grandchildren, 11 great grand children, nieces and nephews; and an extended family who learned lessons of love and compassion from her.
In lieu of flowers, Memorial contributions may go to Direct Relief International.