Gloria Castillo was born on October 13, 1953 in San Benito,Texas, to Luisa and Israel Castilo. She died peacefully at Serenity House Hospice Care on January 15th, 2022, in Santa Barbara, CA.
She is survived by her son Julian Castillo, his wife Julene, her brother Rey (Krissy), sister Fel (Roy), sister Mary, and brother Tony (Dolia), as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends.
Gloria was known for her beautiful big smile that was as contagious as it was genuine. No matter what kind of lemons life handed her (and there were quite a few) she continued, until her last breath, to make lemonade.
She moved to Santa Barbara in her late teens with her brother Rey where she met her future husband Stephen Henderson. She conceived two beautiful children, her daughter Alanna Nicole and her son Julian Sean, both her pride and joy.
Mom loved to dance, especially to live music, where she would boogie like no one was watching. She also loved to sing, performing at SOHO backed by a live rock band, and winning Miss San Benito as a high school student. Mom was a fantastic cook and some of her specialties were carne guisada, “sausage dinner,” and classic pork chops with baked apple on top. She was also a superb party planner, navigating Halloween, Christmas, and Thanksgiving at home, and Fiesta and Fourth of July.
I love you mom. I appreciate you for the safety, the love, and the nest you created for us. I appreciate you for teaching me how to be loved, how to love,and how to journey through this often-chaotic world, heart-first. I appreciate you for showing me what’s truly important, for always encouraging me, and fully believing in me no matter what decisions I made. I am eternally grateful for your unconditional love and. I carry with me your undying love, your unconditional acceptance, and your pure kindness. Thank you for raising me and being my mother. Thank you for touching so many others lives just by being you- a daughter, sister, friend, niece, cousin, aunt, mother, wife, girlfriend, partner, and human. You are loved. Your contagious smile is still reverberating throughout the world.
Please send all your love to Gloria’s family by donating to the causes mentioned: The Mary Oakley Foundation, INC at 494 Twin Oaks Ct., Thousand Oaks, 91362, Serenity House at VNA Health at 509 E. Montecito Street, Suite 200, Santa Barbara, CA 93103/ www.vna.health, and the Alzheimer’s Association.