A Santa Barbara resident for 55 years, Phyllis Dickson recently passed away at the age of 94.
She was born in Elgin, Illinois and was the first daughter of Edwin and Pauline. She loved to read and was an excellent student which allowed her to skip a grade in elementary school. Her father, a metallurgical engineer, took a job with Lockheed Corporation, so the family moved to Glendale, CA where Phyllis attended Hoover High School. She graduated at the age of 16. Four years later, she graduated from the University of California at Los Angeles with a degree in Psychology. There she was a member of the Alpha Phi sorority. After graduation, she was recommended for a job at UC Berkeley in the new field of psychometric statistics (measuring skills, personality, knowledge and aptitude) but she elected to stay at UCLA and participate in developing a Master’s Degree program for Physical Therapy.
While on ski-vacation at Mt. Hood, Oregon, Phyllis met Dr. Delbert Dickson. They married in 1948. The couple soon settled in Santa Barbara, California where Phyllis then lived the majority of her life. She had 4 children – Pamela (now in San Diego, CA), Deborah (now in Seal Beach, CA), Daniel (now in Mendocino, CA), and Brian (now in Sonoma, CA). In addition to being a mother to her 4 children, Phyllis was also mother-in-law to 4 (Tom, Gene, Karen and Bettina), a grandmother to 8 (Whitney, Taylor, Janelle, Gwen, Kira, Tessa, Leo and Archie) and a great-grandmother to 3 (Evan, Piper and Isla).
Traveling the world was an interest that Phyllis inherited from her mother and she was totally hooked after trips to Europe and Rusia in 1966. After her children were grown, she was still young at heart, she visited many other countries and she especially enjoyed going to unique and non-traditional places – including locations in Africa, Asia and South America. For 8 years Phyllis owned and operated the One Stop Travel agency in Santa Barbara. There she was able to share her passion for world travel. She loved to learn about foreign countries and she hosted many foreign exchange students.
Phyllis used her skills to benefit a host of local charities and was involved in many fund-raising campaigns for the American Cancer Society. She was also an active member of the Santa Barbara Botanical Society and the First Presbyterian Church. In 2005, she moved to Northern California to settle in Caspar, close to Mendocino.
As a youth, Phyllis played both cello and viola. As an adult, she enjoyed watercolor painting, snow skiing, and weaving rugs on her own room-size loom. An animal lover, some of her greatest joy came from the many dogs and cats she had over
Her extended family and all friends in Santa Barbara will truly miss Phyllis Dickson.