June 15, 1930 – December 30, 2020
Lita Panganiban DeGracia passed away peacefully in Los Angeles on December 30, 2020 from COVID-19. A long time Mercer Island resident, she is remembered by those who knew her as a devout catholic, hard-working, loving, compassionate and generous soul.
Lita was born on June 15, 1930 in the province of Isabela, Philippines and was the 4th of 9 children born to Jose and Celedonia Panganiban. As the daughter of a Music teacher and Composer, she was a natural pianist. She enjoyed playing the piano and singing for her friends and family, music was her light. Lita graduated from the Far Eastern University in the Philippines with a degree in Elementary Education and taught for many years at St. Mary’s School in Solano Nueve Vizcaya. There she was introduced to Paul Velasco DeGracia by his nephew Cesar DeGracia. They married in January of 1962. The couple moved to Seattle, Washington and Lita began her career of 36 years as a computer program specialist at AT&T.
Lita loved to travel and spent her vacations exploring Europe and enjoyed visiting relatives in the Philippines and Hawaii with her family. She had a passion for roses, she was delightfully proud of her flourishing rose garden. Lita also loved to cook for her family and friends. She jumped at every opportunity to make her signature Pansit and Lumpia for potlucks and parties where she would play Mahjong with her “Barkadas” until the wee hours of the morning. Always social, she maintained relationships with family and friends across the US and the Philippines. Even as she aged and was no longer able to live independently due to Alzheimer's, Lita had a spirit for keeping a pulse on her family and friends.
Her endearing smile, melodic voice, endless compassion and devotion to her family, friends and the Lord will be profoundly missed.
She is survived by her daughter Paulette (Scott) grand-daughter Sofie and sisters Josephine, Florinda and Amanda and a multitude of nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her husband Paul.
The family wishes to thank the staff at Golden Meadows Assisted Living, The Ridge Assisted Living in Salt Lake City, the Shamrock House in Granada Hills and Empire Hospice for their care and support.
A Committal service will be held for family at Sunset Hills Memorial Park on Monday January 18th. A celebration of her life will be postponed to a later date.