July 17, 2014
Scotts Valley resident Claire Hodgin passed away suddenly on July 17, 2014 at the age of 81.
She was born in New York City and grew up in Pennsylvania, Arizona and, primarily, in Pasadena, Calif., where she finished high school and the first two years of college at Pasadena City College.
A gifted singer and actress, Claire began starring in musical events and theater productions. She was in great demand to perform at weddings and other church events.
From Pasadena, she went to Santa Barbara where she attended the University of California, graduating with a degree in Speech at the age of 20.
After graduation, Claire married David T. Hodgin who was the UCSB Associated Students President.
While Dave was serving in the U.S. Army, Claire returned to UCSB for a year of graduate work, obtaining teaching credentials in Speech Correction, followed by establishing the first speech correction program for the County of Santa Barbara.
After his military service, Claire and Dave lived in Santa Barbara where their first two children were born, David and Kathryn (Kate).
In 1960, Dave went back to graduate school near Phoenix, Arizona where Claire perfected her spanish, started a speech correction program in the local schools and kept her family of four under control.
After graduation Dave accepted a job in Stanton, Calif., which soon led to a transfer to Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Claire and the kids moved each time. In Buenos Aires, Claire gave birth to Elizabeth (Lizz), ran her household of five – plus two servants, performed in the local English language chorale, directed a play for the high school, continued her opera training with a famous retired opera diva and wrote a musical parody on the foibles of life in Argentina: “Mañana sin Falta”.
While there, she joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons).
When the family moved to Scotts Valley, Claire continued performing and also was appointed to the Scotts Valley Arts Commission.
Her most recent performances were with Cabrillo Stage in “The Full Monty”, where she received a standing ovation and with Elf Empire at the Trout Farm, her final public dual performance with her “clone” – daughter Lizz.
Claire had long dreamed of an “Arts Corridor” along Scotts Valley Drive.
After years of effort, you can now see painted control boxes throughout town and the first outdoor sculpture in the median strip of the drive.
She also conceived the idea and promoted creation of “Murals in a Day” – three of which you can now view thanks to the efforts of Scotts Valley Artisans.
Another passion of hers was the creation of a Community Performing Arts Center for Scotts Valley, raising the first seed money and serving on the board of a community group developing the theater.
At her death, she also was serving as President of the Scotts Valley Arts Commission and the Montevalle Woman’s Club, as well as Corporate Secretary and Board Member for the Pathfinder Companies and for MusicalMe, Inc.
Claire wore whatever hat her family needed: Chef, teacher, doctor, office manager, artist, social director, et cetera.
She had many dreams: To marry; have children; perform ideal stage and singing roles; have her own theater; her own Paso Fino horse ranch; promote public art; etc. She achieved them all.
She is survived by her husband Dave; daughter Kate, her husband Scott Halversen and children Audrey, Hank, and Sarah; daughter Lizz and her son Daniel; granddaughter Alli Wilkinson.
She was preceded in death by son David Arnold Hodgin and daughter Amanda Claudia Hodgin Wilkinson Boyd.
A celebration of life will be held Saturday, Aug. 30 at 1 p.m. at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, located at 220 Elk Street in Santa Cruz.
In lieu of flowers, tax deductible donations may be made to “MCL, Claire Hodgin Community Theater Fund”, P.O. Box 66438, Scotts Valley, CA 95067-6438.
For further information, contact Lizz Director@MusicalMe.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.