Paul Raymond Carlton, Jr., age 78, passed away peacefully on March 8, 2021 at Huntsville Hospital in Huntsville, Alabama. He was born on October 28, 1942 in St. Louis, Missouri, to Paul, Sr. and Violet Carlton (nee Niere). Paul was a 1960 graduate of Rock Island High School in Rock Island, Illinois. He was resourceful from an early age, and as one of the few highschoolers who owned a car, drove a carpool to earn his gas money. He also made spending money as a caddy at the local gold course for the "seasoned lady golfers" and said he loved that job because they all tipped well. He attended Calhoun Community College for his Associate's Degree, and eventually earned an MBA from the University of Montevallo.
Paul married Elaine Carlton (nee Moon) in 1976 in Huntsville, Alabama, and they were happily married for 45 years. He is survived by his wife, Elaine, his sons Ed, Dave, Don, and Tom, their wives Cherie, Heather, Heather, and Rebecca, his sister Linda, and his grandchildren Jessica, Chase, Kristin, Evan, Lana, and Lance.
Paul loved his country and joined the Naval Reserves in 1976, where he served for 20 years. During his career, he held assignments that led him from coast to coast. His career truly reflected the Seabee motto of "Can Do" and he eventually achieved the rank of Master Chief. He worked at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. before moving back to Huntsville to work at Redstone Arsenal, retiring in 1999 after 30 total years of combined military and civil service.
Paul celebrated life every day, and it became most evident through his dedication to church and community. He loved singing in the church choir and sharing his love of the Lord through song. Paul also gave back to the community through clowning as "Dr. Curley" spreading joy for over 33 years. He had a beautiful gift of making others laugh and bringing hope, love, and happiness to those who were lonely or sick. Dr. Curley became a part of all our lives.
His strongest devotion was to his family. He and Elaine were adventurers. They enjoyed camping in their RV at Lake Guntersville and exploring Hawaii and Alaska. When Paul and Elaine were younger, they used to talk about growing older together and sitting on their front porch in rockers, waving to neighbors as they passed by. Those rockers eventually became their comfy recliners in the living room. Although Paul claimed he never found his very comfortable, he often ended up dozing off by the end of the night.
Paul's patriotic spirit and passions live on through his children, including his confidence, strength, and leadership. He shared his love of history with them through family adventures to many unique and interesting points. He unconditionally supported his family in their endeavors, never hesitating to help them in times of need, and was always proud of their accomplishments.
The visitation will be held at Morningside Baptist Church, located at 15001 Bailey Cove Road, Huntsville, Alabama at 11 am on Friday, March 12, followed by a memorial service at 1 pm. The burial will take place at Hampton Cove Funeral Home located at 6262 US 431 S in Owens Cross Roads, Alabama.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to either Partnership for a Drug-Free Community or Morningside Baptist Church. Donation information can be found on their websites.
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