JAMESTOWN, New York, USA - I learned today that Randy Carlson's dad, Art, has died. Lee Anderson passed along word from Sue Siecker. Art's obituary is listed at the end of this.
Art was a great guy and pivotal in my growing up, much like Sue Guertin's father, Chuck.
My father died when I was nine-years-old, which was why I moved to Lakewood from Brooklyn. My mother and sister and I had family around. And my mother knew Lakewood would be a good place for us to grow up.
Art was one of the reasons it was a good place. I remember lots of great Art stories, perhaps the funniest when he launched his air boat at Gifford Avenue - one of those things like you see in the Everglades with a huge propellor mounted on the back. He took off and lost control of it, smashing into a cabin cruiser moored over near Craig Fransen's house, a boat owned by someone we called Pike.
I can still see Art reaching into his wallet and giving Pike some cash as compensation for the damage to Pike's boat.
An airboat in Florida
Art was always keeping an eye on us when we were kids - but without begin obtrusive. I last saw him about 10 years ago and he was still quite alert and remembered me - and, ever the insurance man, he even asked me the same the question that he had asked me many, many, years before:
Who was really behind the wheel of John Rupp's Mustang when it went off the curve east of Snug Harbor that summer night in 1968? Rupp or me?
Rest in peace, Art. All your questions have answers now.
Art Carlson, Randy's Dad