Gary Phariss
Gary Phariss
Gary Phariss

Obituary of Gary Phariss

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Thursday in Capitola for Gary Phariss who passed away in Santa Cruz following a brief illness.  Born in Porterville, California, he was 87 years old. Gary moved to Santa Cruz at age 18, and began working in the lumber and construction trade. He was first employed with Hebbron - Nigh Lumber, which at the time, was located at the end of Pacific Avenue. He worked for Freeway Lumber, becoming a partner of that business, and later opened his own concrete company “Phariss U-Pour.”

For more than 55 years, Gary and his wife Joan, owned and operated The Aquarium & Gift Shop (the former Buccaneer Gifts) on the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf. Joan preceded Gary in death in 2013. 

Gary was a long time parishioner of St. Joseph’s Catholic Community, as he and Joan raised their 7 children here.
 Gary was an Honorary Life Member of 60 years with Santa Cruz Council 971 of the Knights of Columbus. Serving his council with distinction as its Grand Knight for three terms, he was also a 4th Degree member of the Patriotic branch of the Knights of Columbus, the Padre Palou and Cristeros de Santa Cruz Assemblies. He also served in the Color Corps and as the Faithful Navigator of the Padre Palou Assembly.  He leaves behind many brother knights who will miss his genuine smile and easy going style.

 Gary and Joan were both accomplished travelers, with numerous trips to Hawaii, and memorable journeys to Australia and Europe. 

He leaves his daughter, Kristan P. Lindeke of Aptos, his sons and daughters-in-law, Kevin and Ronda Phariss of Santa Cruz, Keith and Lorrie Phariss of Corralitos, Kenneth and Susana Phariss of Mexico, his daughter and son-in-law, Karen and Michael Goldman of Santa Cruz and daughters; Karleen Munos of Santa Cruz and Kelly Steigelman of Hollister. Gary also leaves eleven beloved grandchildren, nine great grandchildren and his sister, Darlene Phariss Smith. 
The funeral mass will be celebrated on Thursday June 28th,  at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church (435 Monterey Ave.) in Capitola, beginning at 10 a.m.  Committal will be private. Remembrances may be made in his memory to Dementia Society of America-   Please visit the Benito and Azzaro homepage to share your prayers and reflections with his family.