Carmen M. Ramirez, 87, of Santa Barbara went to be with our Lord on April 12th after a long struggle with Dementia, surrounded by her family.
A Santa Barbara local, she was born to her parents Eduardo and Elvira Gonzalez on July 20, 1928. She married her husband, Gilbert Ramirez, also a Santa Barbara native on May 7th, 1950.
As a young girl, Mom worked as what she fondly shared with us as a “Soda Jerk”. The name that came from the action the fountain attendant made when pulling the soda draft arm. No wonder she so enjoyed the slot machines in Vegas whenever her and Dad could make the trip. She was really proud to work at the Copper Coffee Pot on State Street, and equally as proud when she was terminated. After raising her children, Carmen worked for a period of time at the Santa Barbara Club where she loved making deserts for Santa Barbara’s most successful business men followed by a period of time working for Ricardo’s in Goleta. However, her passion was raising children and providing that “motherly” care that can’t be found in most sitters and after school programs. She had a major influence in the upbringing of her children, grandchildren, and those that were close family friends whom requested her services. The bond she built with the children led to the knick name, “Grandma Carmen”.
Her parents, her brother Ozzie Gonzales as well as her sister, to whom she idolized, Graciela Lugo, preceded her in death. Carmen is survived by her husband of 65 years, Gilbert Ramirez as well as her three children and (spouses), Rebecca Bustos (Ralph) of Prescott Valley, AZ, Armando Ramirez (Gayle) of Santa Barbara, CA and Cynthia “Cinderella” Anderson (Christopher) of Leesburg, VA. She also has 6 grandchildren Anissa Bustos of Santa Barbara, CA, Gabriel Bustos (Chelsea) of Turlock, CA, Ryan and Kenneth Ramirez of Santa Barbara, CA, Connor and Kyle Anderson of Leesburg, VA and one great-grandson, Noah Bustos of Turlock, CA.
In addition, surviving are her brother, Edward Gonzales (Dolores), and sister-in-laws, Julia Martinez and Paulette Ramirez, as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins.
The family would like to thank the wonderful and compassionate caregivers at Mission Terrace. Their loving hands and care of our precious mother was special during her last two years thanks to Nurse, Linda Valdivia, CNA, Maria Juarez and Activities, Arturo Gonzalez. Long is the list of names who we will fondly hold a place in our hearts for those who made her stay comfortable. May God bless them all!
A memorial mass will be held for family and friends at 10 AM at St. Raphael’s Church on Monday, April 25th, 2016 followed by a graveside service at Calvary Cemetery and reception immediately following.