Robert Pye Beckham Jr.
Robert Pye Beckham, Jr. passed away gracefully and peacefully on October 20, 2016 at Casa Dorinda in Montecito, California. He was 97 and died of natural causes with his wife Sally at his side.
“Beck” was born in Denver, Colorado, and grew up in Los Angeles. He attended Beverly Hills High School, where he was voted “The Boy Most Likely to Succeed” by his classmates. He received his BA from Stanford University in 1941 and was a member of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity.
A member of “the Greatest Generation”, after Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Marine Corp, rose to the rank of Captain, and spent 23 months fighting with the 5th Marine Division in the South Pacific, including leading troops at the battles of Saipan and Iwo Jima. On discharge in 1945 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.
After WWII, Beck moved to Pasadena. He was a successful independent insurance agent for over 25 years. Upon selling his insurance agency at age 50, he began a second career in the restaurant business and founded “The Chronicle” and “Beckham Place” restaurants in Pasadena.
Beck was not only successful in business, but was dedicated to civil and other community activities. He was President of the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce, Annandale Country Club, Pasadena Rotary and was active on the Vestry and as Junior Warden of All Saints Church Pasadena. He was also a member of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses for over 25 years, serving on a number of committees, including the Queen and Court Committee.
Beck and Sally were married for almost 36 years. Sally was his soulmate and the inspiration of his life. Together they took many trips all around the world and lead trips to England and Scotland with their friends from Pasadena. He was a true Anglophile and often recited poems by Noel Coward and Robert Service.
In November, 1993, Beck and Sally moved to Montecito where they were members of All Saints by the Sea, The Valley Club of Montecito and active at Casa Dorinda. Together they regularly played bridge, gin rummy and enjoyed a good “Beefeater Gibson”.
Beck was a painter, poet, golfer and raconteur throughout his life. He was quick with a joke or an artistic note of inspiration to a friend in need. His stories and sayings will live forever.
Beck was a loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. He is survived by his beloved Sally, his four children, Robert P. Beckham III of Pasadena (Tenley), Patti B. Healy of Newport Beach (Ed), Barbara E. Beckham (Gil) of Los Angeles, Bryan N. Beckham of Paso Robles (Louise), as well as nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Services will be held on November 19th at 2:00 p.m. at All Saints by the Sea in Santa Barbara. A reception will follow at Casa Dorinda in Montecito.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that you consider a donation in Beck’s name to The Huntington Hospital in Pasadena, Direct Relief in Santa Barbara, or to Stanford University Library.