Mary Lousie Clougherty Stilwell, our beloved mother and nana, passed away peacefully at the age of 93 on June 21, 2019 in Santa Barbara, CA. Mary was born in 1926 to Irish parents Michael and Margaret Clougherty in Boston MA. As a child Mary enjoyed spending her summers with family on the Cape. Later in life she loved reading, spending time with her family and friends. She eventually met the love of her life Travis Stilwell in Boston. Soon after the couple moved to Denver, married and eventually moved to Lynwood Calif. where they raised three boys. The family relocated to Santa Barbara in 1973.
Mary was a career woman before many women typically worked. She started as a switchboard operator with the phone company in Boston, then went into office management/bookkeeping in Los Angeles. In 1972 Mary was offered a position as Controller at Excel Mineral Company, located on Coast Village Rd in Montecito. The decision to move to Santa Barbara to live by the beach in an new home built by husband Travis and her three sons, was not difficult. About this time Mary became involved in the women’s movement where she spend several decades locally and on the state level fighting for – women’s rights. Mary was particularly interested in Women’s Rights in the Work Place. Mary was an active member held offices with and Business and Professional Women and Democratic Women for many years.
Mary will be remembered for her strength, determination and lively spirit. She had a wit about her that was infectious, it was hard not to love her. People describe Mary as a “Firecracker” “force to be reckoned with” and “lively spirit”, but she was always a devoted Nana who would do anything for her grandchildren. She spent countless hours babysitting them all the while instilling the proper skills to throw a tea party!
Preceded in death by her brother Robert and granddaughter Kristina, husband Travis. She is survived by her sons: Travis III (Lisa), Michael, and Jim, grandchildren: Shelby, Kalli, Michael, Mary, and James Stilwell
A memorial service will be held on Monday July 1, at 1pm at the Santa Barbara Cemetery. In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Business and Professional Women’s Foundation.