The life of Carl Edward Roberts was exceptional. He was a humble man with a big sense of humor and an even bigger heart. The son of Adrian Roberts and Edith Williams Roberts, Carl was born on February 21, 1936 in Kingston, Jamaica in the West Indies, and departed this life on Sunday, September 13, 2020 at his home of over sixty years on Carroll Street in Brooklyn, New York surrounded by family and close friends.
Carl immigrated to the United States in September of 1954, along with his brother Wally and his sister Kay. He married the love of his life, Dorothy Denise Degazon on October 15, 1960, and they were married for over fifty years. From their union, four daughters were born: Catherine (deceased), Denise, Patricia and Christine. From his daughters, he has three grandchildren: Carl, Kayla and Brooke.
He matriculated at Brooklyn College in 1958 while working full time at Macy’s. In January 1960, he was drafted into the U.S. Army, and served with honor for two years. He loved the United States, and was so proud to represent his newfound homeland and become an American citizen. His final wish was to be honored with a military ceremony. He was honorably discharged in April 1962, only two months before the birth of his first child.
After completing his time with the U.S. Army, he transferred to New York University and earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Investment Banking in October 1969. He was always a hard worker – married, working full time at Macy’s, and now a father to three girls. He had an entrepreneurial spirit that led him to work at New York Life Insurance Company in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. In October 2015, he was honored for fifty years of service, and continued to work there until he retired. Over those years, he won many awards including recognition as a member of the Million Dollar Roundtable Club. Because of his ambition and desire to provide the best for his family, he developed a second business in tax preparation. Carl knew the five boroughs and beyond like the back of his hand, traveling all over to meet clients in their homes. As his business expanded, he finally opened an office at his home on Carroll Street. His beloved wife Dorothy was his receptionist and secretary. As the office grew, he hired more help. He was also a real estate agent and a landlord. A solid family man, he was known as a giver, helping others whenever he could.
Carl enjoyed active involvement in his church, St. Gregory the Great. He was an active member of the Kiwanis Club of Crown Heights for many years, and served as President for three years. He served on Community Board 9 as the Chairperson for the Environmental Committee as well as the Racial & Religious Harmony Committee. He served as Chairperson of the Area Policy Board and ran for New York State Assembly twice. He loved music and dancing, and attended countless events, parties, and conferences dressed to the nines with Dorothy at his side. One of his favorite places was the family’s second home in Parkesburg, Pennsylvania where his children spent their summers. All their friends and extended family have stories of the dancing and laughing that took place there.
Carl was a man for all seasons, calm and graceful in the face of life’s ups and downs, even to the end of his days. He loved his wife Dorothy; his children: Catherine, Denise, Patricia and Christine; and grandchildren: Carl, Kayla and Brooke. He was lucky enough to find love and friendship again, after his beloved wife Dorothy died in 2011, with longtime family friend and widow, Cynthia Charles. He and Dorothy had the dear friendship of Sheryl Ramsey who worked for the family and became part of the family. He was a man very richly blessed.
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