Barbara (Barbie) Hilton Free
Barbara (Barbie) Hilton Free, passed away peacefully in her home in Santa Barbara on October 5, 2008 after a brief illness.
Born October 17, 1927 to Robert and Lucia Vennum Hilton in Barrington, Illinois.
Barbie attended Elgin Academy from years-1938-1942, and Ogontz Junior College (high school) in Pennsylvania 1943-1947 and Mills College 1947-48. Her interests as a teenager included horseback riding and flying.
On June 5, 1948 she married James Lamb Free, Jr. at All Saints by the Sea Church in Santa Barbara.
Barbie was a homemaker and mother; she and Jim had eight children together. Tragically four of these children perished in a house fire in 1957.
Barbie was active in volunteer work most of her life, by helping out at her children’s nursery and grammar schools over the years, collecting donations for the Red Cross, Community Chest and the March of Dimes. Later she served many years on the Boards of Santa Barbara Hospice and Casa Serena. In 1981 she took a fulltime job as Visiting Nurse Association Loan Closet Coordinator where she worked until March 2008, retiring at 80 Â½ years old!.
Barbie is survived by four children- Martha Free Ranson of San Diego, Matthew Hilton Free, Mary Free and Lucia Luna of Santa Barbara and six grandchildren, Andrew & Tim Ranson, Daniel & Megan Wilcox- Free, Sarah & Robert Luna. In addition 12 nieces and nephews, 5 grand nieces and nephews, 1 great-grand niece and numerous cousins survive her.
Memorial services for Barbara Free will be held at All Saints by the Sea Episcopal Church on Friday October 17, 2008 at 2 PM. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care of Santa Barbara, 222 E Canon Perdido St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101