My friend, Mike Rowbottam, passed away in his sleep on December 30, 2018. As kids, Mike and his younger brother, Steve, spent their adolescent years exploring the beaches in Montecito to the SB Marina.
Mike graduated from San Marcos HS and went onto choose carpentry as his trade. While never abandoning his love for the ocean, Mike became a certified diver, learned to sail and lived on his boat, The Rumrunner, in the harbor. His life could be defined as a road scholar and adventurer. He enjoyed diving at the SB Channel Islands and in Baja. In 1984, he crewed on a boat that sailed to Australia then onto Fiji and the Soloman Islands. On this same adventure, he sailed to Hawaii where he lived for 5 yrs working as a carpenter.
He returned to Santa Barbara and his life on his boat in the harbor. In concert with his adventures, he was a very intelligent man – an avid reader of history, particularly of WWII and Vietnam. His uncles, Frank Rowbottam and Robert Forties, were bombadiers in WWII. In the 1990’s, Mike moved into a family built studio behind his mother’s, Winnie, SB home where he lived until Winnie’s death in 2017. He was one of his mother’s caregivers in her later years when she was afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease.
Mike Rowbottam was loyal to all of his friends, no limit to his generosity without hesitation. His home was open to anyone that needed a place to hang out, rest or just watch sports. His depth of character provided some sound advice to many of his friends without extending any judgement.
Mike is survived by his brother, Steve, sister, Pam, and 3 nephews: Jason, John & Josh. And Niece Fiona. There will be a service on Friday, February 15th @ 2:30pm at the Goleta Cemetery followed by a Memorial @ 4:30pm at the Santa Barbara Yacht Club. For more information, contact Mike’s brother, Steve @ 805-455-0614.