Linda Lee Atchison

Date of Birth

March 11, 1937

Date of Death

June 13, 2019

On June 13, 2019, after a brief illness, God called home a beautiful soul. Linda Lee Atchison was lovingly surrounded by her family as she peacefully embarked on her journey from this world to the next, where we she is now healthy, full of joy, and most likely redecorating her new, heavenly mansion!

Linda was born in Kearney, Nebraska on March 11, 1937 to Rollin G. Downing, and Bernice E. Downing (Bailey), both of Kearney, Nebraska. In Kearney, Linda lived a somewhat idyllic childhood, growing up with her younger brother, George, and her older sister, Susie. The stories of her childhood are endless, filled with adventure, and a little bit of mischief! In 1952 the family moved to Santa Barbara, California.

Linda attended her final year of Jr. High school at Santa Barbara Jr. High, and went on to attend Santa Barbara High School where she graduated as a National Honor Student.

Linda married her high school sweetheart, Charles V. Eckert III in 1955. Together they had two children.

Linda was a devoted homemaker and mother. She had a unique gift for decorating, and “home” was always a beautiful place, immaculately kept and decorated in keeping with Linda’s one-of-a-kind flair.

In 1971 Linda married the “love of her life”, Dr. Joseph Leslie Atchison, lovingly known by all who knew him as “Dr. Joe”, or “Doc”. Together the two travelled the world with family and friends. They enjoyed a vibrant social life. The couple hosted beautiful dinner parties with Linda always impressing their friends with her love and skill for preparing scrumptious dinners.

Linda also actively served on the Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital Women’s Auxiliary. She was a 50-year member, past president and historian of the PEO Sisterhood, Chapter IJ, a past member of Children’s Home Society, and a sustaining member of Hospice.

Linda loved adventure and excitement! As a little girl she would saddle up her horse and take off riding for hours at a time. Later in life she pursued her pilot’s license, and even gave car racing a try! She was artistic and enjoyed painting, sewing, calligraphy and paper quilling. Her love for gardening was evident in her artistic creation of special outdoor garden areas at her homes. Linda always had fresh flowers set out, usually cut from her own gardens.

Linda spent her last years enjoying the company of her family and close friends. She also loved spending time with her very special friend and companion, Derrick Lloyd of Goleta. She was a resident at Valle Verde where she was known and loved by many, and cared for by Valle Verde’s excellent staff.

Linda was preceded in passing by her father, Rollin G. Downing, her mother, Bernice (Bea) E. Dietel, her husband, Joseph Leslie Atchison, and her brother, Rollin (George) Downing. Linda is survived by her children, Charles V. Eckert IV (Susan Eckert) of Goleta, and daughter Heidi Peet (Bob Peet) of Lompoc.

Linda was so proud to be “Grammie” to six grandchildren, Antonia Shaw, Charles V. Eckert V (Vinnie), and Joseph Eckert of Santa Barbara, and Amy Shaw, Jessica Paniagua and Benjamin Peet of Lompoc, and “Gi-Gi” to ten great grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister-in-law, Patsy Downing, and her sister, Susie Tatum.

A celebration of Linda’s life for close friends and family will be held on August 3, 2019 from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at The Beachside restaurant in Goleta. Remembrances may be made in any form desired by


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