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Joseph Vincent Castagna Jr.

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Joseph Vincent Castagna Jr. Obituary
December 4, 1931 - January 15, 2016 "Joe" passed away at his home in the Hollywood Hills surrounded with love that included his beloved wife, Chalya, and lab Andiamo, meaning "Let's Go" in Italian. Joe was definitely a Let's Go person! Born in Baltimore, MD to Dr. Joseph Vincent Castagna and Margaret Bosson Castagna, he grew up enjoying the waters of the Chesapeake Bay and the delicious crabs. He attended Loyola High School - Blakefield, won a scholarship in debating and was an avid football and hockey player. Joe always attributed his success to his Jesuit education, where he was taught to think logically, creatively and to question. Joe established a number of scholarships for many young men at his alma mater and also at Loyola High School in Los Angeles. It was important for Joe to give opportunities to students from differing backgrounds and academic ability. He attended John Hopkins University as a pre-med student. His father had hopes Joe would follow in his footsteps as a renowned surgeon, but Joe felt his gifts were in other areas. After he moved with his family to California in 1951, he earned his BA from the University of Southern California and attended the Graduate School of Management at the University of California Los Angeles. Business was his calling. Joe began his career in corporate insurance and then went into real estate. He was founder, owner, and CEO of Castagna Realty and Investments, which included an escrow company and real estate school. His business rapidly expanded into eight offices from the Hollywood Hills to Beverly Hills, also Big Bear Lake. Joe loved his associates and took great pleasure in nourishing and developing their potential. He was a former Director of Lincoln Title, and the consummate entrepreneur with diverse investments. Precision in business and, in all matters of his life, included precision in boating. Joe entered the power boating world and quickly became a champion Predicted Log Racer, winning a multitude of trophies. Among his many accolades, Joe was honored with the prestigious North American Cruiser Association Lou Gandelman - Hall of Champions Perpetual Trophy in 1997. This trophy is awarded to a member who has made a significant contribution to the sport of Cruiser Navigation Contests. He was staff commodore of several organizations including: The Santa Monica Bay Power Fleet, The Southern California Cruiser Association, and The Pacific Coast Yachting Association. He was Director of the North America Cruiser Association and Director and Co-Chairman of the Legislative Committee of Recreational Boaters of California. Joe founded the PCYA sponsored Barusch/Castagna Pacific Coast Log Racing Championship. Joe owned sister ships, both named December Morn. He kept one boat on the east coast to cruise the inter-coastal in Florida and the Bahamas, and the west coast ship for predicted log racing and cruising often to his beloved Catalina Island. Joe was a long-standing member of the California Yacht Club and the Catalina Island Yacht Club. He was also a member of the Fourth of July Yacht Club. Joe had a positive outlook on life and each day, even in pain, he would look to the sky and say, "It's going to be a wonderful day". His love of the sea filled his heart and eased his chronic pain. He had a wonderful sense of humor and cherished all of his friends, as well as making new friends. He loved to encourage young people to grow and develop and find their place in the world. Joe is survived by his loving wife, Chalya Regas Castagna and his sisters Mary Castagna Carrillo and Marguerite Castagna Zimmermann and other family members. Joe and Chalya would have been married for 60 years filled with love and laughter, on June 2, 2016. Andiamo, their lab, sadly passed the day after Joe. A funeral Mass for Joe will be held on Tuesday, January 26, 2016 at 11 AM, Loyola High School Chapel, 1901 Venice Blvd. Los Angeles, 90006. Luncheon to follow. In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name to Wounded Warriors Project or the charity near and dear to your heart would be appreciated. For messages or to post a memory to the family access Legacy.com.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Jan. 24, 2016
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