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Posted on March 17, 2015 | 3:59 p.m.

Carmen Arellano of Santa Barbara, 1930-2015

Source: Pueblo del Rey Funeral Services

Carmen Arellano
Carmen Arellano

As the sun rose and surrounded by family, prayer and song, Carmen Caroline “Nana” Arellano went to be with her Lord on Sunday, March 15, 2015.

Carmen was born in Santa Barbara to Louis and Caroline Cota Arellanes on Dec. 29, 1930. She was a seventh-generation Santa  Barbarian and a direct descendant of the Pablo Cota and Theodore Arellanes families. Her mother passed away at age 4 and Carmen was forced to live at Sunshine Cottage, and then with various relatives as she attended elementary school in Santa Barbara. Her father died when she was 10.

At 11 years of age, Carmen moved to Carpinteria to live with her beloved sister, Barbara, and her husband, Lucio Medel. Carmen flourished and came to love Carpinteria and her Warriors. 

While attending Carpinteria High School, Carmen was a member of the Girls Athletic Association and proudly earned her athletic letter. She was a member of the school choir, which sparked a lifelong passion for singing. For years to come, she often shared her stories and songs about this time in her life. She loved singing the traditional Warrior songs of “Red and White” and “Cheer Boys Cheer.” She made sure her children and grandchildren knew the words to the “Alma Mater” upon graduation!

While in Carpinteria, Carmen met the love of her life, Eddie Arellano. They married on July 23, 1949, a month after her high school graduation. Together they raised five children; Mike (Katherine) Arellano, Eileen Meza-Arellano, Kathleen (Tim) Wickham, Julie (Ben) Soto and Rebecca (Pedro) Menchaca.


Carmen Arellano
Carmen Arellano in her younger years.

Carmen’s family grew as she welcomed grandchildren Kristin, Michael, Matthew, Kristofer, Melina , Jessica, Natalie, Buddy, Billy, Caroline, Andrea, David, Philip, Luke and Ariana, as well as great-grandchildren Christopher, Isabella,  Jacob, Kaitlyn, Mikayla, Delilah, Jeremiah and Sofia. She was eagerly awaiting the June arrival of Olivia and Cruz.

Carmen’s large and growing family was her heart and soul. She loved and worried about each and every one of them. She followed their successes and was so proud of all their accomplishments. She never hesitated to share the details of their lives with those who would listen. If you were in front of her in a grocery line, you would come to know when and what colleges her grandchildren graduated from!

Carmen’s passion and purpose in life was serving her family. She also loved sports, especially college football. She looked forward to Saturdays and cheering on the Cal Bears. As each year passed, she continued to dream of a Rose Bowl bid. She also loved attending games on The Mesa as she followed the Cate Rams.

Carmen loved discussing all aspects of sports; from the teams and coaches to the trades and stats. She was very knowledgeable and always eager to banter with her grandchildren about their favorite teams and alma maters.

From a young age, Carmen was an avid reader and storyteller. She shared this love with her extended family. Later in life, she looked forward to her weekly delivery of library books.

Carmen leaves behind her husband, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren as well as her sister, Barbara Arellanes Medel, and numerous nieces and nephews whom she thought of as her own. Carmen also leaves behind her lifelong friend, Frances Cerda.

She was predeceased by her father, mother and brothers William, Edmond, Henry and Charles Arellanes.

A celebration of Carmen’s life will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 21 at St. Joseph’s Church in Carpinteria. Burial will immediately follow at Carpinteria Cemetary.

In memory of Carmen, donations can be made to Friends of the Carpinteria Library, c/o Carpinteria Library, 5141 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria, CA 93013 or to the Carpinteria High School Booster Club, P.O. Box 444, Carpinteria, CA 93014.

Arrangements entrusted to Pueblo del Rey Funeral Services.

                    "Warrior Spirit Never Dies"


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