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Edward Peter McGettigan

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Edward Peter McGettigan Obituary
Edward Peter McGettigan
November 27, 1945 - June 14, 2018
A Longtime Resident of Santa Cruz
Edward Peter McGettigan, also known as Peter McGettigan, passed away June 14, 2018 in Santa Cruz, California, where he had been a resident since 1975. Peter is descended from four first families – Vallejo, Lugo, Carrillo, Lopez - that came to California with Fr. Serra, Portolá, Rivera and Anza beginning in 1774. He is the great, great grandson of General M.G. Vallejo and Doña Francisca Carrillo Vallejo, grandson of Francisca Vallejo McGettigan and Dr. Charles D. McGettigan and son of Edward Platon McGettigan and Betty Brummund.
Peter was born in St. Mary's hospital in San Francisco and raised in Menlo Park. Peter was a percussionist and musician in the Palo Alto Military Band, Peninsula Symphony, and California Youth Symphony. He traveled with CYS for a month long concert tour of Japan in 1963. Always interested in theater, acting, and production, Peter's video history goes back to 8mm movies shorts in the 1960's. He moved to Hollywood after graduation from high school and worked as an apprentice on the now cult classic television show, "Gilligan's Island," for three seasons in the script division as on-site assistant dialog director and was exposed to editing and direction.
While a film major at Foothill College in Los Altos, his student film "Tarot Tripping" won first place honors in the film festival when he was there. Peter then ran the 13th, 14th and 15th independent film festivals for the college. He coordinated all the judging, screenings, guest lectures, and seminars, preparing him to be asked to start Santa Cruz's first film festival.
Peter moved to Santa Cruz in 1975 and became well known and recognized for his extensive documentaries, producing, directing, editing and chronicling that community's history. When in 2010, Peter received the Gail Rich Award, it was said that "his mantra is – tape everything" and that "Peter is always shooting."
Peter has over the years, produced thousands of hours of programs and recorded 700 City Council meetings. He worked with community Television of Santa Cruz County and earned six awards from West Coast Alliance of Community Television Stations for video excellence for his documentaries. Peter was on the City of Santa Cruz Advisory Board, the Historic Preservation Commission, Friends of the Del Mar Theatre, and the Museum of Art and Histories Blue Plaque Committee.
It was proclaimed by then Mayor Don Lane of Santa Cruz that: 12/08/2015 as Peter McGettigan Day and encouraged council members and all citizens to express heartfelt appreciation for his 15 years of dedication in recording City Council meetings as well as the multitude of other ways that he has worked on behalf of the Santa Cruz Community.
Current Mayor David J. Terrazas, stated that "Peter was an amazing person who put Santa Cruz front and center with all that he did." This could come from Peter's ancestral history where his 3rd great grandfather, Ignacio Vallejo was associated with Branciforte and Santa Cruz. Peter joined the Navy in 1966 and completed two tours of duty in Viet Nam. Every year, until the last several, Peter volunteered for the Veterans serving Thanksgiving dinners and dressing as Santa Claus.
He is survived by his sister, Martha Ann Francisca McGettigan of Pope Valley, California and Mary Karl McGettigan of Coos Bay, Oregon. Peter was predeceased by his father, mother, and younger brother, Michael Vallejo McGettigan.
It was said that Peter's shooting, editing or directing the people and events capturing Santa Cruz for posterity, show what makes Santa Cruz County what it is. Memorial contributions may be made to your favorite Veterans organization. For memorial information or to express condolences to the family, view photos or share memories, please visit www.scmemorial.com Peter's comment just this week was "I feel so lucky living in Santa Cruz."
He will be greatly missed.


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Published in Santa Cruz Sentinel on June 24, 2018
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