Linda passed away unexpectedly and suddenly on December 30, 2022. Her family and friends will miss her quiet, steady presence and her “always being there” for them, like an angel by their side. She was a fun, light-hearted person, not one to criticize, and was rarely angry. Linda grew up near Los Angeles, first in Wilmington and later in Rancho Palos Verdes. She loved music, and both Linda and her mom played the accordion and the piano throughout their lives. Linda loved anything to do with music, and it was her passion. As a teen when she wasn’t practicing her accordion or piano, she enjoyed the nearby beaches, accompanied by her purple, Bing surfboard.
Linda was the first child of Betty and Robert Gregory, and she had a younger sister, Roberta. Their father worked for North American Rockwell rendering aircraft as a draftsman, and as a Publications Analyst. He later wrote and illustrated cartoons, particularly the Disney character Donald Duck for Dell and Gold Key comics. He was an artist and her mother was a homemaker.
Linda lived a very secure and safe childhood, and will be missed dearly. She was very creative, and her great sense of imagination and wonder permeated throughout her life. She and her childhood best friend were also known for various projects and pranks, which sometimes got them into mild trouble, especially at summer camp. Linda was fortunate as a teen to see the Beatles in their debut at The Hollywood Bowl, sparking her lifelong love of live rock and roll concerts.
Linda attended Rolling Hills High School and graduated from California State College, Dominguez Hills, earning a BA in sociology. She later became the Deputy Clerk for the City of Redondo Beach for many years, also working in Elections. Coming to Santa Barbara in 1990, she served the Juvenile Probation Dept., applying her sociology degree with a compassion for helping teens.
She was active in the Santa Barbara Accordion Club and played in the local Solstice parades. She also played piano and performed at various events. She was interested in songwriting and took workshops, collaborating with musicians on songs. She had some music published under her own label, called “Gold Coast Records”. Her piano instructor was Renee Hamaty, who teaches locally. She was a supporter for the Santa Barbara Jazz Society, and an avid social dancer (especially Salsa). She attended classes and danced at many local social events.
Linda was a member of the Native Daughters of the Golden West for 31 years and a past President of Tierra de Oro Parlor No. 304. She was the Parlor’s organist for many years. She also played music at official visits with the Grand President. Linda was always willing to attend or assist in a Parlor activity. It had been planned for Linda to play at the Grand President Installation Ceremony this coming June. Linda could frequently be seen with the Native Daughters for the Wednesday Fiesta Pequeña shows every August.
Professionally, Linda worked as a consultant for the City of Goleta since 2003. She initially served as the Recording Clerk for the Planning Commission and the Design Review Board. She continued to do so up until the time of her passing. Her services included clerking at the public hearings of the Goleta Planning Commission and the Design Review Board. She recorded the proceedings, as well as the production of the minutes. She later provided additional services associated with the Planning Department’s Document Imaging Program. Linda provided approximately 19 years of consultant Services to the City of Goleta. This was a demanding job. Her quiet dedication and steady presence have been much appreciated, and she will be missed. Linda also spent a number of years working for the Santa Barbara County Water Department in the early 1990’s.
Linda regularly attended Catholic church services with quiet faith, and especially enjoyed the Mission. She also performed volunteer work ushering at church programs, music and film events. She was especially a friend to seniors, and Veterans. She loved animals and had a number of cats and dogs during her lifetime. She was known for her genuine sweetness and kindness.
Just before Christmas 2022, Linda contacted Covid; and combined with other health factors, she shockingly died suddenly within one week of the Covid symptoms onset.
Linda is survived by her sister, Roberta, cousins, aunts, and her two lovely cats, Destiny and Miko who she loved dearly. Linda is also survived by her dear friends in Santa Barbara and Los Angeles, who will miss her daily friendship and cherish her memory always.
Funeral Mass at the Old Mission Santa Barbara on Monday January 30th at 11:00 AM
Arrangements entrusted to McDermott-Crockett Mortuary