History of the David Garvin Cartano Family
(by Julie Cartano Rourke)
I was in Iowa visiting
Kyle last week and had the opportunity to drive northwest of Des
Moines several hours to Lake
Okebogi to meet the
"other" David Cartano, David Garvin Cartano. He and his wife, Jo Ann very graciously
treated me to a delicious lunch at their summer home on West Lake Okebogi and
we swapped Cartano family stories. Dave
is the grandson of Richard Andrew "Dick" Cartano, brother of our
grandfather, Daniel Cartano. They are said to have played baseball barehanded
together. We have the same
great-grandparents, Anton and Carolyn Klein Cartano of Springville, Iowa.
He has the original family portrait on his wall of Anton, Carolyn and their 11
(of 16) surviving Cartano children! I believe his mother, Blanche, was the one
who sent Dad the copy of the picture which we have. His father was Wilbur Richard Cartano (1987-
1972), a cattle farmer who married Blanche Thompson. Dave definitely looks like he's a Cartano
related to Dad, Bob and Ross Fletcher (son of Dad's sister, Margaret Carolyn
Wilbur had two sisters, Olive and Elfrieda. Elfrieda majored in drama at Grinnell College
in Iowa, a school with much the same
reputation as Reed College in Oregon. She dated Gary Cooper in college, but
married George Freshwater, a football coach.
Dave said she was an excellent musician and organist until late in life.
She lived to around the age of 100.
His grandfather Richard was a highly respected member of
the community in Monticello, Iowa where he was President of the Bank of
Monticello and sat on the board. He
built the bank up to be one of the largest in the state. Dave said his grandfather was very modest about
his accomplishments, but Dave was amazed at how many people came up to him at
the funeral to tell him how wonderful his grandfather had been and how much he
had done for them.
His father, Wilbur was a very warm, practical man. Dave
has 3 siblings, Carol Anne, Richard Bruce "Dick" (living in San Francisco, 2
children, Jennifer and Chris), and Lawrence Alan. He and Dick had a family reunion last week at
Lake Okebogi with their children and
grandchildren. Dave and Jo Ann have two
children, Geoffrey David, a geologist in Raleigh,
N.C., and Ann, a psychologist in Appleton, WI.
Both have children.
Dave majored in agronomy at Iowa
(where Mom got her Master's in Nutrition, about 40 miles north of Kyle in Ames, IA). He met his wife Jo Ann Cowan there. They both received MS's from Ohio
State, and he earned a
PhD there as well. Jo Ann's family is of Swedish heritage and her
grandparents first owned their summer home on Lake Okebogi. Her sister lives next door. Dave and Jo Ann live at the lake for 4 months
in the summer, and spend the rest of their time at their home in Florida. Both Dave and Jo Ann have had very
interesting careers. More details are on
our David's Cartano website (www.cartano.net)
under Personal Information. Before Dave and
Jo Ann retired, Dave had groves of exotic fruit trees for 20 years in South Dade County, Florida. He told me stories about poachers trying to
steal his lychee nuts in the night, and about how a hurricane in 1992 swept
away every tree he had, except one trapped in an irrigation ditch, just hours
after he had received an earnest money agreement to sell the groves. Needless to say, the sale did not go through.
Jo Ann was in Wisconsin
at the time of the hurricane with her daughter who was having a baby. She could not reach Dave because the power
and phones were out for days. She had to
rent a car from the Miami
airport to go out to their home because a taxi would not take her. She didn't know what
condition she would find him in. Luckily, he was fine but they had a huge mess
to clean up! Dave has been a competitive tennis player in his age group with a
state ranking. He does all the cooking
for Jo Ann and himself. Can you believe
this ... OYSTER STEW is a family favorite that they always have on Christmas
Eve?! They also make "cornmeal
mush" and even fry it in butter and put syrup on it, just like Dad did!
All in all, it was a wonderful afternoon. It was fun to meet another Cartano after all
these years of thinking we didn't have any relatives except the Fletchers on
the Cartano side! One of our
grandfathers' Richard and Daniel's siblings, John was known as "Honest
John" Cartano. Dave knows of a relative who has a plaque with "Honest
John" on his
wall. That would be
fun to see!
The "other" David Cartano can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Cartano website is http://www.cartano.net/