WATERTOWN, NY — Carol Anne Calarco Shannon was born on March 28, 1935. She was the eldest twin daughter of Emilio “Eddie” and Anna (Kramer) Calarco. Carol was born twenty minutes before her twin brother Donnie and never let him forget that fact. Carol grew up in Watertown. In her own words, she “lived pretty much a carefree life”.
Carol attended Watertown High School, graduating in 1953. She graduated from the Watertown School of Commerce in 1954. Prior to her marriage, she held a variety of jobs including a bookkeeping clerk at Hyde’s Plumbing and Heating Company, an engineering clerk at the New York Telephone Company, and as a secretary to the manager of the Prudential Insurance Company.
On Jan. 21, 1961, she married the love of her life, James (Jim) T. Shannon, at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church in Watertown. Jim went on active duty in the Army, and she became a military spouse, traveling the world.
Life in the military was a nomadic one. In the first nine years of their marriage, they moved seven times. They lived in Texas, Massachusetts, Alabama (twice), Germany, and New York (when Jim went to Vietnam in 1969). Being an Army wife was quite the experience. She learned how to navigate the complex hierarchy of the military world, volunteered with the Red Cross and Girl Scouts, and was an active member of the Officer’s Wife’s Club.
She and Jim raised three daughters: Debbie, Lisa, and Ann Marie. She raised them to be strong, independent, and caring women who handle any challenge that life will throw at them. She taught them by example. She owned multiple businesses throughout the years. In the early 1970s, she owned her own ceramics business; she followed that by making and selling reproduction porcelain dolls. In the 1990s she owned a successful wedding and event planning company.
Once Jim retired from the Army and moved to private industry, Carol continued to work with the Girl Scouts and the Officer’s Wife’s Club. In addition, she became a docent at Sully Plantation, a pre-civil war plantation and museum in Chantilly, VA. She also continued to travel the world with Jim as part of his job. Overall, she lived in or visited 19 countries on three continents.
Carol once said that she did not want to be a grandmother until she was at least 65; her daughters obliged her. She and Jim were blessed with 4 wonderful, and now grown, grandchildren – three granddaughters and a grandson. They were her joy and she spoiled them in a way that only a grandmother could. She also taught them how to be strong, independent, and caring people, who could handle any challenge that life will throw at them.
Carol is survived by her daughters: Debbie Corry, Lisa Shannon (Holly McMeekin), and Ann Marie (Anthony) Wood; four grandchildren: Grayson Wood; Kaytlin Corry; Rebekah Corry; and Nevie Wood; an “adopted” daughter and son-in-law: Chris and Ron Lattomus; her brother: Donald Calarco; one niece: Francee Calarco; and too many friends to list.
She was preceded in death by the love of her life, best friend, and husband Jim Shannon; her parents Emilio “Eddie” and Anna (Kramer) Calarco; and a son-in-law Paul Corry.
Calling hours will be held 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 5, 2022, at the D.L. Calarco Funeral Home, Inc. A funeral service will be held 10 a.m. Wednesday, July 6, 2022, at the funeral home with Rev. Leon Schilling officiating. Burial will follow in Brookside Cemetery.
Contributions may be made to Amissville Fire and Rescue. Checks can be mailed to: Amissville Volunteer Fire and Rescue, Box 147, Amissville, VA 20106.
Online condolences may be made at DLCalarco.com