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Mary Alice Coffman

1923 - 2011, Santa Barbara

April 18,1923 – October 9, 2011

Mary Alice was born at St. Francis hospital in Santa Barbara and lived her life of 88 years in the community of Carpinteria, between the sea and the mountains, among friends and family. She passed away peacefully at Serenity House in the presence of her children.

She was the daughter of Loren Hebel and Estelle Fisher Hebel, sister of Lila (Hebe) Bartz and the wife of Kenneth R. Coffman. Mary Alice and Ken raised five children, 4 sons and 1 daughter: Zail, Christopher (Tina), Forest (Karen), Robin (Jim) and Scott (Cindy), and lived to enjoy the lives of 7 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.

Mary Alice grew up in the Carpinteria community, riding horses on the Rincon and in the hills, attending local schools, and enrolling in music and psychology at UCLA for two years until the beginning of WWII, during which time she lived in San Francisco and worked for the war effort.

She and Ken were married in 1947 and bought a home on Star Pine Road, where they raised their family and lived for 66 years. Mary Alice continued her childhood passion for music (she could play a dozen instruments, from saxophone to accordion) by playing organ for the St. Joseph Parish's services for many years. She had perfect pitch, which she kept to the final days of her life.

Mary Alice started a travel agency for Barclay's Bank in Carpinteria, and then became a partial owner of Your Travel in Carpinteria, where she worked for over 20 years. She traveled extensively during these years, and she and Ken enjoyed many journeys and adventures around the world.

Her home on Star Pine Road was the center of her life, with her children always coming and going from their lives in Europe, Africa, Asia, South America and around the USA. Her focus was always on her family and community; she volunteered extensively for the Carpinteria Valley Historical Society (and as board member), Help, and within St. Joseph's parish.

Mary Alice will be always remembered for her life of service, her kind and gentle ways, and her spirit of love and support. A mass will be held on November 5, 2011 at the Saint Joseph’s chapel, located on Ash and 7th St. in Carpinteria on Nov. 5, 2011 at 1 p.m. A reception will be held at the Carpinteria Valley Historical Society, 956 Maple Ave following the service.

Donations in remembrance of Mary Alice may be made to the Carpinteria Valley Historical Society (956 Maple Ave, Carpinteria, 93013) or Hospice of Santa Barbara (2050 Alameda Padre Serra, Suite 100, Santa Barbara, 93103).

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