Audrey E. Martinson

Date of Birth

July 7, 1923

Date of Death

May 18, 2020

City of Death

Santa Barbara, CA

Audrey Elizabeth Martinson died peacefully of natural causes on the evening of May 18, 2020 at Valle Verde in Santa Barbara. Audrey had a wry sense of humor, a keen intellect, and was known for her love of dogs, horses, and natural beauty.

She was born Audrey Elizabeth Tope on July 7, 1923 in Hampshire, England to Wilfred S. Tope (later Major-General) and Doreen A. W. Tope, nee Jollye. Audrey and her sister Deb spent much of their youth with their grandfather, a country doctor, in the village of Alresford. She left school at the outset of World War II.

Audrey married American infantry officer, Walter O. Kraft, in 1945 and moved with him to Kodiak, Alaska in 1946 where the couple had eight surviving children. The family relocated to Palm Springs, California in 1969. Audrey moved the family to Santa Barbara in 1972 where she married her second husband, Trevor J. Martinson and acquired the house that was her home for the rest of her life. In addition to raising children, Audrey was involved in many good causes including volunteering at Cottage Hospital and serving on the UCSB Board of Regents. She was frequently seen riding her Arabian, Rabzadi, on Hope Ranch trails and at the beach. Audrey married Robert C. Snyder in 1989. They enjoyed each other’s company and traveled extensively together by car. He passed away in 2000. Audrey was a weekly regular at Vices & Spices on State Street and a long-time student at SBCC Adult Ed where she studied memoir-writing. Her beautiful garden was enjoyed by family, friends, and a string of a dozen puppies that she loved to spoil.

Audrey is survived by her children: Susie Hall (Andy | Anchorage, AK), Dave Kraft (Santa Rosa, CA), Tessa Kraft (Healdsburg, CA), Kevin Kraft (Camarillo, CA), Timothy Kraft (Sue Koskela | Birmingham, AL), Jennifer Kraft Will (Allan | Torrance, CA), Frieda Kraft (Victor Badner |Larchmont, NY), Nick Kraft (Flagstaff AZ), as well as sixteen grandchildren and nineteen great-grandchildren. She also leaves stepchildren: Bob Snyder II and Richard Snyder.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in her name to the Humane Society of Santa Barbara or the Santa Barbara Adult Education Consortium. A memorial will be announced at a later date.


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