Louise Robertson Hummer
November 8th, 1950 – June 14th, 2011
Louise Robertson Hummer was born on November 8th, 1950, in Kilwinning, Scotland and left us on June 14th, 2011 in Santa Barbara, California after living with cancer for three and a half years.
Louise was born to Howard F. Eaton, an Air Force officer and Marion M. Eaton, a loving and dedicated mother. She was the oldest daughter in a family of six children.
From Scotland, Louise and her family moved to New Hampshire where she developed a passion for skiing played in the woods and loved attending Dartmouth sporting events.
From there the family moved to Vandenberg Air Force Base where Louise began her love affair with the ocean. As a young woman in California, Louise enjoyed horseback riding, hiking, sunbathing and developed many lifelong friendships while attending Cabrillo High School.
Upon graduating high school Louise found herself at the University of Nebraska for one year where she endured one icy winter evening driving all night just to see the Rolling Stones in concert. Her adoration of live concert shows continued throughout her life.
After Nebraska she moved back to California and settled in Santa Barbara, where in the summer of 1969, she met Richard Hummer. They fell in love, married at ages nineteen and twenty and were married for forty one years.
One of the most notable aspects of Louise’s personality was her undying dedication and respect for the health of her body. A vegetarian for most of her life, Louise was constantly active with hiking, walking, tennis, yoga, Pilates and countless exercise classes. She stayed fit her entire life and could recommend the perfect Western, Eastern, herbal or homeopathic remedy for anything that ailed you.
Louise will always be remembered for her compassionate personality. She remained close with friends from all periods of her life, was a loving godmother to her friends’ children, and had an unwavering passion for charity.
In 1971, she worked at The Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions for five years and then for the next ten years ran a non-profit fundraising business. Later in life, she was one of the first involved in Food from the Heart, a non-profit organization that cooks weekly meals for the ill. She continued to volunteer at Food from the Heart until the last months of her life.
In 1986 Louise gave up her business to pursue her next venture, raising her daughter Caroline. She became Caroline’s mother later in life, but before that was involved in the upbringing of many of her friends’ children. Louise displayed the same never-ending love for all of them that she did for her own daughter; planning birthday parties, teaching them her love for music and the ocean and taking them on weekend retreats. These relationships turned her into the ultimate mother that she was. She lost a lot of sleep for her daughter–comforting her at night (even until Caroline was far too old for that luxury) and waking up before 6am to pack her morning snack, her lunch and her afternoon snack, and was something that continued all the way through Caroline’s High School years. Caroline’s friends still remember the incredible snack plates and dinners that Louise would cook for them. She also made sure that Caroline and her friends were equipped with an always-evolving dress-up box that was kept full of vintage and consignment-store treasures. Also, when Caroline left for college, Louise would send her a vintage post card with loving notes, almost every single day.
Louise’s love of the ocean grew as she explored different seasides. She and her family spent many consecutive Christmases in Mexico, combing the beaches, collecting seashells and enjoying the sunshine. She enjoyed visiting her sister Kate, in Florida, and floating in the calm, Atlantic 85 degree waters and in 2008 Louise and Richard were graciously invited to spend a summer touring Tahiti on a yacht with their close friends. Wherever Louise went, she returned with the most incredible seashells. Her deepest beach relationship was with the North shore of Kauai, an area she visited countless times with her Richard and Caroline. One could find Louise walking at dawn on Moloa’a, Hanalei Bay and Ha’ena, searching for her beloved shells.
If a person’s impact on this world can truly be measured by the number of people they have touched, then Louise’s was great. During her illness her family received support from an overwhelming number of people, all who expressed their undying love and respect for her. They speak fondly of her humor, kindness and resolve and remember how she taught others to discover the beauty of nature and music that every part of this world holds. Some could say that music was her religion as she attended concerts her whole life and left each concert glowing, happy and energized. Whether it was the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Van Morrison, Gwen Stefani or U2, she relished in the sound.
Louise lived with grace, dignity and compassion. She was selfless, kind, funny and an awesome sense of humor. She lived to make people happy.
When Louise was diagnosed with cancer she was given six to twelve months to live. Instead, she fought and lived her life fully, for forty-two months, treasuring each day that she got to spend with her friends, family, the beaches and the mountains. Louise passed with her family around her in her flower filled bedroom.
Louise Robertson Hummer is survived by her mother Marion, her husband, Richard, her daughter Caroline, her brothers, Tim, Brian and Kevin, her sisters, Susan and Kate and her nieces and nephew.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Food from the Heart at www.sbfoodfromtheheart.com