Priscilla Schleich

Obituary of Priscilla Schleich

Priscilla Schleich, age 93, of Santa Cruz, California, passed away peacefully in her home on January 18th, 2021, surrounded by family, caregivers and loved ones. 


She was born in Clinton, MA to Charles H. Spaulding and Grace T. Woodward.  She grew up in Framingham, MA and graduated as a Registered Nurse from Children’s Hospital in Boston in 1948. 


She married Warner Peticolas in 1955 and settled in Eugene, OR.  After their divorce she married Thomas Schleich and moved to Santa Cruz, CA, in 1970.

Priscilla worked as a nurse at the University of California Santa Cruz Student Health Center, before retiring in the early 1990s.  She adored the students and her wonderful colleagues there.


An avid gardener, Priscilla loved growing flowers and always kept fresh cut flowers throughout the house.  One of her favorite hobbies became flower pressing and she would create beautiful cards and framed prints to give to family and friends.  In her later years, on her daily walks she was known to “borrow” snippets of flowers and other interesting plants from her neighbors’ yards.  


Priscilla also loved traveling and kept in touch through visits and phone calls with her family and friends on the East Coast:  Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island…

She was an avid hiker in her younger years, canoer and skier.  For many summers, she and a group of friends used to rent a cabin in the mountains near Bear Valley, California.


Priscilla had many close friends in the Santa Cruz area and led quite the social life.  For years, she belonged to the Harvey West swim club where she would participate in water aerobics with her friends three times a week.  Over the years, Priscilla and her friends regularly got together to play bridge or Rummy Cube, or to have lunch together to celebrate birthdays. 


Priscilla absolutely loved entertaining and was a gourmet cook, happiest when she was in her busy kitchen cooking for family and friends.  We will especially miss her famous Ma Mac’s cake which she baked for birthdays and her Molasses Pudding on Thanksgiving.

For many years each summer, Priscilla volunteered with the Bear Valley Music Festival and contributed her artwork to the Arts of Bear Valley Association.

Priscilla loved music, especially classical, and regularly attended the Santa Cruz Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony and the SF Opera with friends and family.  She participated in the Cabrillo Music Festival for many years and often hosted out-of-town musicians at her Santa Cruz home. 


When she stopped driving, she was a regular customer with Metro ParaCruz. 


Her friends say: “We had a hard time keeping up with her.”


Priscilla donated and gave her time to many causes: children’s health organizations, local animal shelters, the UCSC Farm and Garden program, the Homeless Garden Project, and she loved the UCSC Arboretum and the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History.


Priscilla is survived by her 3 children: Cynthia Peticolas, Nina Tanti and Phillip Peticolas, 6 grandchildren: Christopher Johnson, Kelsey-Grace Johnson, Lia Tanti, Maxime Tanti, Logan Peticolas, Tanner Peticolas and 1 great-grandchild: Jentry Johnson.  She will be greatly missed by them all.


She is preceded in death by her parents, her sister Marcia, her first husband Warner and second husband Thomas.


Priscilla’s family would like to thank her devoted caregivers who kept her happy and active in her beloved Santa Cruz home, as well as her wonderful neighbors who kept a watchful eye on her as she got older.


In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to a local charity of your choice.









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