Henry Lévy, Jr.
Lifelong Santa Barbara resident Henry Lévy, Jr. died as he lived, peacefully, as his family gathered to celebrate his 102nd birthday.
His parents Henry and Marie Neuberger Lévy met in San Francisco and came to Santa Barbara in 1916 to start Henry Lévy Inc. a retail furniture business. Henry was born on January 24, 1917 at Cottage Hospital.
In his youth, Henry joined the Boy Scouts where he formed many lifelong friendships. As would become a theme in the rest of his life, Henry was an avid learner, hard worker, and stubborn in his own charming way. A perfect example of this was that he completed all the requirements to become an Eagle Scout but was denied the designation because he refused to put his face in the water during the swimming test.
Henry pursued his love of learning at USC and Stanford and received his MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He then returned to Santa Barbara and joined the family business where he traveled and selected furniture for the store.
Henry served in the map-making department of the Army during WWII. When he returned home, he met his wife Joan in 1946. They married and raised their three children in Santa Barbara. As a family they enjoyed sailing, travel, taking walks, and the local mountains.
Henry was also active in the SB Retail Merchants Association, Parking Committee, University Club, SB Yacht Club, Unitarian Society, and the Downtown Organization which named him Citizen of the Year in 1981.
After a long and happy career and close relationships with employees and customers alike, in 1977 Henry sold his furniture business and retired. From that point on, he and Joan traveled extensively in the US and around the world. They were always incredibly loving and involved grandparents who made an enormous impact in their grandchildren’s lives. Henry volunteered at the Santa Barbara Historical Society Museum library and dedicated time to his study of the French language. He was also a voracious reader and dedicated correspondent.
Henry attributed his longevity to his habit of daily walks which he enjoyed his whole life. His family also attributed it to his easy-going nature. He was calm even in dire circumstances and continued to seek knowledge and adventure his whole life long. He will be missed terribly.
Preceded in death by his wife Joan.
Survived by daughter Annette Goena, sons Lawrence (Jennifer Galer) and Charles Lévy.
Granddaughters María (Hunter) Leigh and Sofía Goena.
Great-granddaughter Xiomara Leigh.
Niece Judy (Mark) Lucas.
As well as many friends past and present.
His family gathered on his birthday to celebrate his life. No other services are planned.
In lieu of flowers, Henry requested donations to the Braille Institute or the Santa Barbara Foundation.