Rev. Carl Castleman

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

San Jose, Calif.

Rev. Carl Castleman, the son of Elmer and Inez Castleman, was born in the Black Water community on Dec. 26, 1922, and died Saturday, July 14, 2007, at his home in San Jose, Calif.

Castleman enjoyed his growing-up years at Black Water. After finishing his education at black Water High School, he farmed in the Black Water community before serving in the U.S. Army during World War II. Much of his time was spent in Japan.

After he returned home, he continued with his life of farming until he received the call to preach. He was ordained to the ministry by the Blackwater Baptist Church. He then moved his family to Walnut Ridge where he began his years of preparation at Southern Baptist College. During his sophomore year he served as president of the student body and was presented with the distinguished Rural Minister's Award. He was not only a successful pastor during these years, but he was also a well-known evangelist.

His churches in Arkansas include the following: Gosnell Baptist Church near Blytheville, Epseba Baptist Church near Paragould, Philadelphia Baptist Church near Jonesboro, Bellaire Baptist Church at Dermott, and First Baptist Church at Lexa.

He served as pastor of the following churches in California: First Baptist Church at Cupertino, Ebbetts Pass Baptist Church of Arnold, and First Baptist Church at Delano.

Castleman served as senior pastor in the churches and led the congregations in building programs. He was the master carpenter for these new buildings. He had learned to be a skillful carpenter under the direction of his father-in-law, W.W. Caery.

After his retirement from the ministry, he finished his working career as a carpenter. Until he was 77 years old, he enjoyed snow skiing, water skiing, fishing, hunting, and traveling with Ora Lee in the different states, Canada, and Europe.

His parents and three brothers, Lawdell, J.E. and Billy Gene, preceded him in death.

He will be missed by all who loved him: his devoted wife of 66 years, Ora Lee Caery Castleman of the home; his daughter, Lanette (Michael) Milligan of Alpine, Calif.; his son, Dan (Shirley) Castleman of San Jose, Calif.; his grandchildren: Barbara (Rick) Martinez, Dianna (Thomas) Kessler, Amanda (Mike) Powell, Randall Dwight Grce, seven great-grandchildren, five great-great-grandchildren, and a host of nieces and nephews.

He also leaves behind three loving brothers: Ell (Ola D.) of Moore, Okla.; Clell of Manila; and Gaylon (Betty) of Highland, Calif.

Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. Thursday, July 19, at the First Baptist Church of Cupertino. Mr. Castleman had now come full circle; he had been the first pastor of the church where his memorial service was held. (He and Ora Lee had returned to the church a few years earlier.)

Rev. Robin Davies, the pastor, gave the welcome and invocation. Berrick Brumley sang Carl's favorite son, "How Great Thou Art." Carl's nephew, Rev. Todd Burgett, gave the scripture and prayer. His son Dan read the obituary and a tribute. The congregation sang "Amazing Grace."

Other tributes were given by members of the congregation, Michael Milligan, Barbara Martinez, Wanda King, and Jenene Hinson, who had been a member of the Philadelphia Church in Jonesboro.

Pallbearers were John Van Wyk, Rick Orlandi, Michael Milligan, Thomas Kessler, Rick Martinez, Chad Uriend, Caery Uriend, and Will Uriend.

Burial followed under the direction of Darling-Fischer funeral Home. Mr. Castleman was laid to rest in the Los Gatos Memorial Park in San Jose, Calif.

Lasting memorials may be made to the Blackwater Baptist Church, Manila.