Jerry Gorton (September 8, 1950 to August 22, 2022) passed quickly, unexpectedly, and peacefully on August 22, 2022. He shared his atomic wit, humor, and incredible insights on life with those he loved to the very end.
He lived his life as a true Santa Barbara, CA Native. His family moved to Santa Barbara, in 1961. He graduated from La Cumbre Jr. High School and San Marcos High School where he played on the golf team, as did both of his brothers. Growing up in Hidden Valley, all three brothers would hike across the creek to La Cumbre Golf Course where they all worked for years for Sam Randolph and played golf incessantly.
Jerry also loved the ocean and surfing. He would hang out and surf at Hendry’s (The Pit!), and he loved Jalama. No family picture of Jerry exists of him in water without a smile on his face.
After high school, Jerry served his country in Vietnam and, like so many others, faced tough challenges upon his return.
For years he ran the family plumbing supply shop on East Haley Street. It was a busy, fun, and vibrant intersection of so many local lives.
After some years in Phoenix, AZ he and his wife Barbara returned to Solvang, CA to help care for his mother, Helen and her husband, Jim Radcliffe. He and Barbara made many close friends at Rancho Santa Ynez where they lived, and at the Alisal River Course where they both worked, and he played golf.
Jerry is preceded in death by his father, Dean Gorton (1999), his sister, Val Gorton (2011) and his stepfather, Jim Radcliffe (2021). He is survived by his loving wife, soulmate, and partner in crime, Barbara Gorton; mother, Helen Radcliffe; daughter, Marti Gorton; brothers, Tom Gorton (Catherine) and Mike Gorton (Mary), as well as scores of nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Jerry’s most precious gift was his ability to connect with those in his life in a way that left us all knowing how fully he truly saw, loved, accepted, and appreciated who we were. Huge holes the sands of time slowly, mercifully, fill.