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A 50 year resident of La Verne, CA passed away on August 22, 2013 at the age of 93. He was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts. In Boston, George met the love of his life Harriette just prior to WWII. As many in his generation, George and Harriette went through the depression. George entered the Navy at the beginning of WWII and Harriette the Red Cross. In the Navy, George started as a jet engine mechanic and by the end of the war he was a Chief Petty Officer. He served his country with honor and valor and was a survivor of the USS Yorktown in the Battle of Midway. He served as a Naval Reservist until 1957. His military experience gained him the leadership strength that he later depended on in his municipal career.
Six months after surviving the Battle of Midway, George was granted a three day pass in December of 1942, where he took Harriette's hand in marriage. While living in San Diego, they had their first child, Lenore Beth followed by their son Neal. George and his family moved to Ontario, California in 1953 where he started a rich legacy of service to the community.
He started his municipal career in Ontario in the following positions: City Tax Collector, License Collector, Water Department Manager, and Deputy City Clerk. In the City of Azusa he served as Administrative Assistant followed by Administrative Officer. In 1963, during the prime of his career, George and family moved to La Verne where he was appointed the City Manager of La Verne. He spent 18 years leading the city during a time of major growth and development including the cash purchase of the current La Verne City Hall. George earned his Master's Degree at La Verne College. He retired from his position in 1980. After a short retirement, he spent another 12 years as interim City Manager at the following cities: La Canada Flintridge, Fontana, Diamond Bar, Azusa, and Irwindale, who all needed his experience and wisdom to find a fulltime City Manager for their city. He also served as Executive Officer for "Area D" Office of Emergency Services/Civil Defense in South El Monte.
George was known as a distinguished gentleman with a high degree of intelligence, loyalty, and dependability; he had a courteous and refined manner in everything he pursued. He made stressful situations humorous with his calming personality and demeanor and was greatly respected for his strong success in issue resolution. Those who served under his leadership described George as a man of integrity of all respects. George always wanted to give back to the community in his humble way wherever he could. He served on the Board at David and Margaret Youth & Family Services and also supported Harriette's efforts with McKinley Children's Center of San Dimas.
George and his wife Harriette loved to travel; taking over 30 trips visiting countries all around the world. Their first home in Boston was on the bay and that love of the ocean never left the two of them. They owned several boats throughout their years together. George's hobbies included golf, fishing and boating. A devoted family man, George led a full and active life. He and Harriette were long time members of the Church of the Brethren. He is preceded in death by his wife of 69 years, Harriette, and his daughter Beth. He is survived by his Son Neal, three granddaughters, two great grand children, and two great-great granddaughters.
A public Memorial Service has been scheduled for Saturday, September 14th, at the Church of the Brethren in La Verne. The Color Guard ceremony will be at 2:00 in the Church courtyard, followed by the Memorial Service in the sanctuary at 2:30. The Memorial Celebration will be in honor of both George and Harriette Caswell. Memorial gifts can be given in the Caswell's names to McKinley Children's Center, 762 W. Cypress St. San Dimas, CA 91773.
Published in Inland Valley Daily Bulletin on Sept. 6, 2013