SWANN, Elizabeth Theresa (“Terry”)

Date of Birth

February 3, 1935

Date of Death

November 7, 2019

Terry peacefully passed into the waiting arms of her Lord and Savior surrounded by family on Thursday, November 7 at the age of 84.

Terry was born on February 3, 1935 in Dossenheim, Germany to Elizabeta and Johann Binder and was the last remaining of seven Binder siblings. Her mother (Mütter) and the early years growing up during World War II shaped how she viewed life, and the world.
Following the war, Terry and her family immigrated to Toronto, Canada in 1951. It was there that she met the love of her life, Don, and they were married in 1955. They pulled up their Canadian roots and moved to Santa Barbara in 1960.

Her professional career began in 1962 as a vice president’s secretary at Jefferson Electronics. When the company moved out of town, she moved on to Santa Barbara Savings and Loan where she worked in the residential loan department. This was the beginning of a distinguished career servicing real estate loans for the Santa Barbara community. She worked for a brief time as a loan officer at Montecito Bank and Trust and spent the final 20 years of her career at Santa Barbara Bank and Trust where for many years was the leading performing loan officer. She took great care in providing the best service possible to her clients. She retired in 2010.

Throughout her life she was an avid sports and theater fan at San Marcos and Dos Pueblos High Schools, especially when her children and grandchildren were playing, singing, acting, dancing or coaching. She attended every San Marcos football game in the late 1970’s, every San Marcos theater event in the late 1980’s, every Dos Pueblos football game in the late 2000’s and every San Marcos softball game in the 2010’s. Her attendance at these events took her all around Southern California and on occasion, across the country. An ardent hockey fan, she followed her grandsons all over the state and country with enthusiastic, unwavering, and sometimes over-exuberant support.

In her retirement, her grandchildren became a primary focus. She intently followed their progress through school, confirmation, and other activities outside of school. She frequently had lunch with each one individually, advising them of their potential and how to best invest their time and resources for the future. It was during these times that she gave them an appreciation for what they have today compared to what she grew up with in her youth in Germany.

Terry was a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church for over 50 years where she ensured that each of her children and grandchildren were confirmed. She was also a member of the Edelweiss Choir for over 20 years, singing in concerts in many US cities and foreign countries.

Terry is survived by her husband, Don, children Jeff (Cathy) and Tina Okpysh (Olie) of Santa Barbara, and Garrett of New York and grandchildren Tyler, Matthew, Nicholas, Christian and Stephanie.

A “Celebration of Life” is planned for Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at 11am at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 380 North Fairview Ave, Goleta.

Her family would like to express their sincere thanks to Dr. Darol Joseff and the SB Cottage Hospital SICU staff for the excellent attention, care, and compassion provided during her time there.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to The Wounded Warrior Project – she was always grateful for our servicemen who sacrifice so much for our freedom.


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