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MERRITT, Barbara Kelly

July 9, 2013 6:02 AM

Barbara passed away peacefully on July 3rd at the age of 91. A third generation San Franciscan, Barbara was the first child of Walter Kelly and Sybil Price McCormack. Raised in San Mateo, she attended Notre Dame High School and Stanford University School of Journalism. She joined Alpha Phi Sorority and made many lifelong friends. Upon graduation, she put her communications skills to work for J. Walter Thompson Advertising Agency in San Francisco. During that time she met and married John Merritt, a young Stanford Resident in Orthopedic Surgery. In 1948, Dr Merritt brought his bride home to Santa Barbara where he was raised.

As a busy young mother of four daughters, Barbara found time to become deeply involved in her community. She served as President of: the Junior League, the Santa Barbara Chapter of the National Charity League, the Little Town Club and the Santa Barbara Zoo Board. She was a trustee of the Santa Barbara Foundation and on the boards of: the Visiting Nurses Association, the Children's Home Society, the Welfare Planning Council, Catholic Social Services, the Community Arts Association, UCSB Affiliates, Marymount School, Laguna Blanca School and the Garden Club of Santa Barbara.

Barbara was an avid reader and gardener. She was a formidable opponent in tennis and bridge, a discerning investor and world traveler. But her most enjoyable times were spent with her family and numerous friends.

She was predeceased by her husband John Merritt and her daughter, Lisa Merritt. She is survived by her sister, Jeanne Haag; daughters and their husbands: Victoria and Dennis Howell, Deborah and Grant Willson and Barbara and Alan Smith; her grand children: Lisa and John Marke, John and Elizabeth Howell, Kelly and Joseph Janes, William and Caroline Willson, Andrew Willson, Amelia Smith Jennifer Smith and Matthew Smith; and great grand children: Evan Marke, Ryan Marke, Charles Willson and Peyton Janes.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be sent to the Santa Barbara Foundation, Lisa's garden at the Santa Barbara Zoo, and the Santa Cruz Island Foundation.

The family would like to thank the Casa Dorinda staff for their love, kindness and professional help.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, July 13, 2013 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church at 11:00AM.


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