Pamela Lynne Larson was born in Monterey Park, California, to her parents, Viola Stanton Larson and Melvin Samuel Larson. She loved animals, and while growing up, she would frequently bring them home. Pam continued this passion in her first job at the Pink Poodle Pet Shop. Later, she worked at Glees Party Shop, where they put her creativity to good use. Pamela also enjoyed helping and caring for people as a medical assistant in a doctor’s office. Her father was a Mason, and Pamela was an active member of the leadership organization Job’s Daughters. Many summers, she and her family would travel to Colorado to visit relatives and help with their cattle ranching. She would also talk of car rides each weekend to visit and help her grandparents nearby in Glendale.
Pam graduated from Montebello High School in 1959. She and her husband, Bruce A. Mortimer, were good friends through school but did not date until after graduation. At this time, Pam had set out for a career as a ‘stewardess’ with United Airlines. She completed her training and was based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Pam tolerated the drastic weather change from the moderate California climate; however, her career was cut short by a marriage proposal from Bruce. Upon saying ‘yes,’ she had to resign her position per the 1960s United Airlines protocol that disallowed stewardesses’ to be wedded. Pam and Bruce married on March 31, 1962, and a year later started a family.
The virtues of helping others, artistic talent, a strong work ethic, and leadership that she learned and experienced as a child were carried into her adulthood. She always balanced work, child-rearing, and maintaining a home as a firefighter’s wife. She was PTA president for her daughter’s elementary school while living in Pico Rivera. After moving to Wrightwood in 1976, she and Bruce were actively involved in the Serrano High School Athletic Boosters. Pam served on the Wrightwood Parks and Recreation Committee and was instrumental in developing a children’s park. She was a member and chair of the Municipal Advisory Committee tackling many community issues and was a member of the American Business Women’s Association. Pam and Bruce were part of the original Shareholders of the Wrightwood Country Club, whose effort ensured the property remained an activity area for the local community. In 1978 she sold and created display advertisements for the Mountaineer-Progress Newspaper. In 1983 she switched focus and became a realtor. This effort eventually grew into her own business, Country Life Realty, which she co-owned with Marilyn Wells. As real estate brokers, Pam and Marilyn combined their strengths and had a very successful business.
After 32 years in real estate, Pam retired. Pam’s hobbies included sewing, oil painting, raising chickens, and spending time with family and friends. She always wanted to venture, whether it be a day trip or extended travel. She loved living in Wrightwood and celebrated each new season. She was best known for her welcoming presence, positivity, and ease of conversation. Pam was often one of the first people that newcomers met when they moved to Wrightwood, and they would continue to come back and visit her office.
Her kind heart, generosity, and intelligent humor touched many, and she will be greatly missed. Pam passed away on March 7, 2023, surrounded by her immediate family. She is survived by her: daughters Colleen Mortimer-Scott and Wendi Mortimer Swanson; grandchildren, Holly E. Dillenbeck, Gregory R. Blanks, Madeleine R. Blanks, and Shane M. Swanson; great-grandchildren Cameron J. Dillenbeck and Emma J. Swanson; brother Timothy K. Larson and the extended families of each.
A memorial service will be held at the Wrightwood Country Club on May 6 at 2 pm. In lieu of flowers, a donation could be considered to the Wrightwood Property Owners Association, Inc. P.O. Box 487, Wrightwood, CA 92397. 760-316-4255 | https://www.wwpoa.org/