George Whitworth LORD

A longtime resident of Sebastopol, CA and more recently Santa Fe, NM, passed away in Los Angeles on November 17, 2012 from complications due to skin cancer and congestive heart failure. He was undergoing intensive radiation treatment at USC's Norris Cancer Hospital. Born June 23, 1940 in Hollywood, CA to George Clyde Lord and Pauline Boyer Lord, George grew up in southern California and graduated with the Class of 1958 from Hollywood High. A member of Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity, he received his BA in Business Administration from UC Berkeley and soon after completed training as an airplane navigator in the Naval ROTC. In 1962 George moved to San Francisco and began a remarkable career with Macy's Department Store where, as a Senior Buyer, he was largely responsible for developing one of the most profitable and well respected Fine China departments among west coast retailers. George's position at Macy's fostered his lifelong love of travel, and he made frequent buying trips to China, Japan, Europe and Latin America before retiring from the company in 1986. In 1969 George met Dennis Perry, his life-partner; starting in the early 1970s George and Dennis began buying, renovating and maintaining residential and commercial properties in San Francisco; the couple also led an active cultural and social life - they were season ticket holders to the San Francisco Ballet and they gave annual Halloween parties that were always eagerly anticipated events among their social circle. In 1993 they moved to Sebastopol, where they would become actively involved with the charity Food for Thought, the Sonoma County food bank dedicated to helping clients with HIV and AIDS. Between 1999 and 2005 George served on the organization's Board of Directors. Following Dennis' death in 2003 George began spending part of his time in Palm Springs, and starting in 2006 Santa Fe, which became his permanent home in May 2010. In Santa Fe George enjoyed having a close group of friends with whom he entertained, traveled and attended the opera. George's love of travel never diminished despite increasing health problems during the last few years. In addition to visiting Hawaii several times a year, George was an avid cruiser, and over the course of four decades sailed to nearly every port of call. He had toured Russia, India, and Oceania and, less than two months before passing away, returned home from the one adventure he had always wanted to experience - an African safari. George Lord was a magnetic personality to whom others naturally gravitated and was someone who greatly valued having close personal relationships. He was an attractive man - tall, large and conspicuously red headed; he was enterprising, smart, witty, savvy and generous. George was admired and loved by many friends and certainly all in his family. He was for some a role model and for others a mentor and he will be missed by everyone who was fortunate to know him. George is survived by his sister Christy Lord Evans, his nephew Christopher Chene Evans and his partner Phong Vien, his first cousin Dorothy Bartley and her husband Bernard Bartley, and by his best friend Mark Cooper.

Published Online in the Press Democrat from Dec. 18 to Dec. 19, 2012