by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Spark Photography

Precious Time Together

family_pennington2Scripps Ranch residents since 1997, the Pennington family loves SR and their Traviata neighborhood, with caring friends and great paths for running and walking. Parents Ron and Marilou met through a close mutual friend when they were in college, and they chose to move to Scripps Ranch because the new construction at the time signified a growing community. They have grown to a family of six with children Nathan, Julia, Gabriel, and Olivia. Hobbies as a family include supporting each other at games, performances, volunteer efforts, and ‘Yelping’ new places to eat wherever they go. The family loves to volunteer their time for Scouts, the National Foundation for Autism Research, their church, and basketball. “Much time over the past several years has gone to Scripps Ranch National Basketball League,” they shared, “where we serve on the board, the kids play and keep score, and Ron and Gabriel coach.”family_pennington3


Parents: Ron and Marilou Pennington
Children: Nathan (18), Julia (17), Gabriel (15), Olivia (13)
Community: Scripps Ranch since 1997
Parents’ Hometowns: Military kids who lived in various places – Philippines, Mississippi Gulf Coast, Washington, and finally San Diego
Parents’ Occupations: Ron – Engineer at General Atomics, Marilou – Manager of Government Accounting and Financial Planning & Analysis at Leonardo DRS Daylight Solutions
Favorite Places to Visit in 92131: St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church and School, community basketball courts, Vons, Share Tea, and restaurants that have a Kids Eat Free Night


family_pennington4With Ron as an electrical engineer and Marilou an accountant, both have worked for government contractors for most of their careers – Ron on the technical side and Marilou in the finance and compliance area. Nathan is a freshman at San Diego State studying computer engineering and Gabriel is a sophomore at Scripps Ranch High School (SRHS), where he plays basketball, piano, and guitar. Both boys are actively involved with Boy Scouts. Daughter Julia is a sophomore at SRHS, whereas Olivia is in eighth grade at St. Gregory the Great Catholic School. “We feel truly blessed that we were a part of the small group of families that took a chance when St. Gregory the Great Catholic School opened in 2009,” the Penningtons affirmed. “A sense of service and the importance of respect for yourself and others is instilled in the students each and every day.” Julia is a varsity basketball player and Gender Equality Club vice president, while Olivia does Academic Decathlon and Student Council.

family_pennington5The Penningtons enjoy their precious time together, keeping track of each other and their events through Google Calendars, which works well as long as an event actually makes it into the calendar. They feel that Scripps Ranch has been a wonderful place for raising a family because not only does the community celebrate each other’s successes, but also it pulls together during the tough times. The Penningtons struggle, like so many other families they know, to help their children cope with the enormous amount of academic and social pressure in today’s environment. They want kids to realize that they are so much more than their test scores and GPAs and are thankful that many others in the community are working to do the same. “The saying goes ‘it takes a village to raise a child,’ and the Scripps Ranch community takes this to heart.”