John Robert DeLoreto
John R. DeLoreto, born in Santa Barbara, CA, on March 30th, 1959, the son of James and Frances Neilson DeLoreto, passed away peacefully on June 17th, 2022 at his home in AZ surrounded by loved ones after battling cancer. John is survived by family members: daughter Caroline (Adam Taft); son Robert James (RJ) & granddaughters Liliana & Myloh DeLoreto; ex-wife Camilla La Mer (aka Victoria); brothers Edward S. & James Jr. (Sally), niece Megan (Matt), nephews Chris & Greg DeLoreto; extended family Silvia Biedermann, Monique Franco, Alicia Lopez & Ferman Kelly III; & his God family Hilary Ruston and godchildren Kate and Max Ruston.
As a child John loved cuddling with his parents and adored his older brothers who played, read to him & taught him a lot. They gave him a lot of attention since he was the baby of the family. He had a photographic memory and was a natural entrepreneur. Neighbors remember buying hot dogs at Johnny’s Treehouse Café or seeing a film at his basement theater. He attended Roosevelt & Laguna Blanca where he met his lifelong best friends Lanny Ebenstein, Theodore Gekis, Hilary Ruston & Danielle Greene. He attended Cate HS & SBHS. John’s passions included: government & justice, debating with Lanny starting at age five about presidential elections; standing up for other students, as Hilary remembers; participating in theater & film; writing for school newspapers; & pushing the limits.
He studied Comparative Literature at Berkeley & met & fell deeply in love with his wife Victoria. Each night they would watch Julia Child, cooking her meals & laughing. They moved to SB & got married. Caroline was born while John attended SB Law School. RJ was born prematurely a year later as John sat his CA State Bar Exam. A month of driving to Ventura’s Neonatal Unit inspired John & Victoria to be the first to fundraise for a Cottage Hospital Neonatal Unit which was built soon after. One of John’s greatest joys was raising his kids & grandkids: Telling his famous & magical “Rosie Bomb” stories, golfing with RJ, attending plays with Caroline, & going on many adventures.
One of John’s purposes in life was to give a voice to those in need, to stand up for what was right & speak up against injustice. He had a huge heart. Sometimes his outspokenness could stir the waters but brought needed changes. In the 90’s he was on the Goleta Waterboard during the drought helping bring state water to SB, won cases against police injustices including harassment against gay business owners in SB, & was on the board of Access Theater.
John had many gifts and talents. He had a unique view of life from his colorful personality & quick mind, sometimes bringing challenges, but also seeing many possibilities where others could not. He was inventive, creative, imaginative, & brilliant as a lawyer. John would bring a smile during difficult times & a good laugh at life. He was a firecracker & bright ball of energy, taking this life & everyone who met him by storm. John was loved by many & will be greatly missed.
Service will be held at SB Mission at 11:00am July 29th.
For information on service and more go to website: www.celebratingjohndeloreto.com