Patrick Anthony O’Malley

Date of Birth

February 13, 1931

Date of Death

June 13, 2018

Patrick Anthony O’Malley of Santa Barbara, California. Beloved husband of Betty O’Malley; Father of Gabrielle, Vincent, Elizabeth, Patrick, and Dominic O’Malley; father-in-law of Timothy Murphy, Kate (Neish) O’Malley and Minako (Omori) O’Malley; Grandfather of Casey Michelson, Zach and Hannah Murphy, Eliza Scheley, Patrick and Maggie O’Malley; great-grandfather of Ella Michelson.

Pat spent two years at Saint Ambrose College in Davenport, Iowa. When his money ran out and the Korean conflict started to heat up, he joined the Navy and served on the aircraft carriers USS Wright and USS Cabot in the Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Sea. His job was an airplane radar operator spotting submarines.

After discharge he graduated with a Bachelors of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Iowa where he met his wife of 59 years. They married a week after his graduation and set out immediately for New York City where he began his first job at Sperry Gyroscope.

A year later, Pat got a job with AC Sparkplug (later Delco Electronics) that transferred him to Milwaukee, WI. Soon after, he received his Masters of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Marquette University. A highlight of his 42 year-long career was working on the Apollo space program and helping the first man land on the moon. He moved his family to Santa Barbara in 1972 as part of the Delco/GM migration from Milwaukee.

Throughout his life, Pat was an avid recreational sportsman. He enjoyed the comradery of playing in company softball leagues, including a seniors’ (over 70) team. He was a Master Emeritus Certified Athletics Official for USA Track and Field and an Emeritus State 1 US Soccer Federation referee. He loved recreational soccer. He was an AYSO soccer referee and referee trainer for over 40 years, refereeing games himself until his early 80’s. To his final day he was recognized around town by multiple generations of soccer players.

As a longtime member of the Goleta Rotary Club, Pat traveled to Morelia Mexico several times with other Rotarians gathering and carrying supplies and assisting with patient care before and after cataract surgery. Pat was honored as both Goleta Chamber of Commerce Man of the year and Rotarian of the year. His volunteer work with Rotary of Goleta, Youth Soccer, and the Foundation for Girsh Park brought him great joy and wonderful friendships. He is famous (his family would say infamous) for his corn booth at the Fourth of July celebration every year at Girsh Park.

As a board member of AYSO and the Foundation for Girsh Park, Pat helped lead the Fields Forever campaign to get an artificial turf soccer field installed at Girsh Park for the community to enjoy year round. He never gave up that dream and worked incessantly and obsessively for eight years until it became a reality. In honor of his long time service, on January 6th of this year, a building at Girsh Park was named in his honor, the PAT O’MALLEY FIELDHOUSE.

Pat was a great crooner and loved to dance, especially to Mexican music. He loved bicycle rides with his children and grandchildren and having coffee with the guys at Anna’s Bakery. He was a friend to many, a loving husband, father, and grandfather. He believed himself blessed. He was a good man. He had a good life.

Services will be held at St Raphael’s church in Goleta at 10:00 a.m., Friday June 22. Reception will follow in the Parish Hall. Memorial contributions may be made to the Foundation for Girsh Park in Goleta.


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