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Linda Uellner 1947-2012
updated: Jun 21, 2012, 10:00 AM
By Veronica Uellner DeCoster
The measure of life is not the number of years, but how those years are lived. In that respect, Linda
Uellner lived an incredibly full life, continually influencing others with her generosity, ingenuity,
compassion, and unconditional love.
Linda was born to James and Floella Downs on March 27, 1947, at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Millington,
TN. A self-proclaimed "Navy brat," she never stayed long in any one place, but her favorite childhood
memories were of living abroad in Naples, Italy, and time spent with her two brothers on the Potomac in
Tall Timbers, MD.
The family finally settled in Carpinteria, where Linda attended high school in the early 1960s. Following
graduation, she married and had two daughters with Michael Franklin. When the marriage ended, she
"lost a husband, but gained custody of" the Franklin clan.
The true love of Linda's life was sparked by a dead battery. At the neighborhood Shell station, Linda
met owner Robert Uellner, who fell in love with her and her girls. Linda and Bob married in 1977 while
living in Santa Ynez. Five years later, after returning to Santa Barbara, their son was born.
Linda has been active in the Montecito business community for the last 40 years, initially as co-owner of
Coast Village Shell and, more recently, Coast Village Chevron and Olive Mill 76. She served as an officer
and member of the Coast Village Business Association for many years and was a regular sponsor of
fundraising activities in Montecito.
Although Linda will be remembered for her many attributes, perhaps most inspiring was the fortitude
with which she faced metastatic breast cancer. Always cheerful, always optimistic, she endured years of
chemotherapy with grace and determination.
Even as the cancer progressed, she continued to give of herself, bringing friends together for holiday
parties, planning events with her family, and spending time with loved ones, including a trip to
Disneyland with her two granddaughters.
Linda passed away at her Santa Barbara home on Saturday, June 9th, at age 65. She is survived by her
husband, Robert Uellner; daughter Veronica (Tom) DeCoster; son Brian Uellner; granddaughters Kelsey
and Ainslea DeCoster; brothers William (Johnita) Downs and Patrick (Jill) Downs; brother-in-law William
Uellner; honorary siblings Cathy (Rick) Closson, John Franklin, Betty Franklin, and Barbara (Dan) Thomas;
many nieces and nephews; and countless friends, all of whom she considered her extended family. She
was preceded in death by her daughter Michelle in 1984.
Linda's life will be celebrated with a dessert buffet and champagne at the Montecito Country Club on
July 1, 2012, between 7 pm and 10 pm. At Linda's request, there will be no formal service, but a toast
will be given at 8:30 pm. Memories of Linda may be posted at www.linda.uellner.muchloved.com. The
family wishes to thank the doctors and phenomenal nursing staff at the Cancer Center, as well as the
caregivers from Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care of Santa Barbara for their compassion and care during
Linda's final months.
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