Santa Barbara lost another unique citizen in April, when Janice Pegram died. JP was a woman with a huge heart and a steady constant desire to help wherever and whenever she could. She lived fully and with grace and strength as she negotiated the difficult challenges of her Type 1 diabetes, a condition she learned she had in her early thirties. She passed away on April 18 at home, peacefully in her bed, of complications of diabetes, a book and her reading glasses by her side…a reflection of the voracious reader she was all her life.
Known as JP to her many Santa Barbara friends, she was also known as Jan or AJ (for Aunt Janice) to her family and her adored nieces and nephews. JP was born on January 20, 1948 in Huntington Park, California to parents, Roy and Joyce Pegram. Her childhood was shared with an older brother Larry and a younger sister Nancy. The family moved to Whittier when she was around 2 years old, and all her early schooling was there. She was a Brownie and a Girl Scout, as well as a cheerleader and a leader in student government at Sierra High School. Her beauty and fun personality were acknowledged by her peers when she was elected Homecoming Princess!
When she was admitted to UCSB in 1966, JP launched a whole new adventure as did all of her friends during those formative and event-filled years. The sharing of so many life changing and life altering experiences of college in the 60s and early 70s formed friend groups that persevered throughout her life. The music, cultural shifts, the intensity of life and fun overshadowed by the omnipresence of the Vietnam War fostered a cultural bond of adventure and exploration that never really left. JP loved to travel, and she enjoyed many great trips to Mexico, Central America, Europe and Asia. Up to a few months ago JP was still looking forward to a safari trip to Africa planned to celebrate her 70th birthday.
JP stayed in Santa Barbara after graduation and worked many years at her alma mater, UCSB. She started with the Alumni Association, ending her tenure there as Assistant Director. She then moved over the Office of Development to support the UCSB Foundation Board of Trustees. Her philanthropic and caring instincts led her to Direct Relief International next, where she worked as an officer of the Development team, and finally ended her work career at the Santa Barbara Public Library for a short stint, before embarking on being well and truly retired.
She could now read to her heart’s content, or travel or just hang out at home with her sweet and indulged Springer spaniel rescue dog, Bolt. Her family remembers that her favorite song at 4 years old was “How Much is that Doggie in the Window?”–a portent of her great love of animals and her string of beloved Springer spaniels.
JP is survived by her Sister Nancy (Danny) La Farga, and her brother Larry (Shelly) Pegram. Her memory also lives on through her beloved nieces and nephews, Darcie (Tom) McNeil, Michael Pegram, Elizabeth (Kristen McCandeless) Pegram, Jessica La Farga, and Paul La Farga as well as her great nieces, Maya, and Vivian.
A celebration of her life will be held at the Ellwood Ranch in Goleta on Saturday May 26, 2018 at 2 pm. Please bring an appetizer to share. Beverages will be provided. Take 101 freeway north and exit Winchester Canyon towards the mountains. Take a right onto Cathedral Oaks, a left on Ellwood Ridge Road and follow the signs to the end.